All You Need To Know About Cybercrime
After Sony’s hack last year, cybercrime is becoming a bigger risk than ever before. Many people are unaware of how vulnerable their cellphone, tablets, computers, and other devices exposed to the Internet. We all use and connect to the Internet to get simple things done. Sometimes we even link to unprotected wireless networks without thinking twice about it.
According to Norton, cybercrime has passed illegal drug trafficking as a criminal moneymaker. It can take as little as 3 seconds to have your identity stolen. Once it is stolen, your life will never be the same.
But, how do you protect yourself from cybercrime? Are there steps you can take to be proactive or have you already been a victim of cybercrime and need help with damage control? I have worked in the online industry for many years and understand the importance of keeping your personal information safe. At CayVisions, we believe in doing all we can to educate people about cybercrime and how to avoid it.
What is Cybercrime?
To begin, you must know what cybercrime is. It is any criminal act that involves computers and networks. Hate crimes, telemarketing or phishing schemes, Internet fraud, identity theft, and financial account theft is all considered illegal activities done using computers and the Internet.
Types of Cybercrime
Type 1 Cybercrime
This is the lowest level of crime and is usually one event that harms one victim. An example would be someone illegally downloading a movie and the file is embedded with a keystroke logger. This is software that allows hackers to steal your information such as user ID and passwords to various bank accounts.
Type 2 Cybercrime
Generally, this is much more serious than Type 1. It involves cyberstalking and harassment, extortion, blackmail, complex corporate espionage, etc. This is a large ongoing event that hurts many people. For example, the hack in Sony hurt thousands of people and compromised their information. Important company deals were also unleashed, which was very bad. An entire corporation was compromised.
How You Can Protect Yourself
Update your computer with the latest software. The reason companies come out with new software is to make it harder for hackers to get into. These criminals are smart and have probably already found a way to hack into the older software.
Keep your passwords complex. A good rule of thumb I always use is to have at least 8 characters in my password, have a mix of capital and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. This makes it harder for hackers to crack.
Invest in security software such as Norton or McAffe. It will help protect your computer from viruses, malware, Spam, protect your identity, and other services. You can find more information at their website.
Refrain from opening emails from people you do not know. These are most likely phishing emails to try to get information from you or may have a virus in the file.
Be careful of what you click on. If you happen to see an online offer that seems too good to be real, then most likely this is a bad link that could put a nasty virus to get your personal information.
Always check your bank account and credit card statements to make sure your accounts have not been compromised. If they have been, then call your financial institution immediately to dispute the charge.
Check your credit report to make sure there are not suspicious accounts open under your name. If something looks like it does not belong, then contact your credit bureau immediately to dispute it.
I cannot stress enough how much of a headache cybercrime can be. Hackers are smart and they are only getting smarter. It is important to protect yourself and your household from having your information compromised. I hope you will use a few of these tips to keep your information safe from hackers and criminals.