Cyber (internet) crime

Cyber crime - also referred to as internet or eCrime

2m people were affected by #cybercrime in 2016

It could happen to anyone by cyber aware

Cyber crime is when criminals exploit the speed, convenience and anonymity that technology offers in order to commit a range of offences.  It is becoming increasingly serious and is estimated that it costs the global economy about $445 billion a year, Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).

Hiblio TV - 'Don't be a victim of Cyber Crime'

What is ‘cyber crime?’ 

Police often break cyber crime down into two categories:

  • Cyber enabled crime – traditional crimes committed using the internet.  e.g. theft, harassment, fraud, identity theft, selling stolen goods, drug dealing or people smuggling.
  • Cyber dependant crime - online crimes where a digital system is the target.  These include attacks on computer systems to disrupt IT infrastructures, e.g. unauthorised access (hacking), malicious software programming (malware) or denial of service attacks.

We are all vulnerable to the potential of cyber crime, either individually or as a company. Remember that 80% of all cyber crime is preventable.

The Law

Cyber crime is against the law under the Computer Misuse Act (CMA) 1990.  It may also include abusive or harassing communications under the Malicious Communications Act 1988 or Protection from Harassment Act 1997.

How to avoid becoming a victim of cyber crime

  • Use ‘strong’ passwords, and keep your passwords secure. i.e. use at least 8 characters, include numbers and letters, both upper and lower case.
  • Update your computer security, anti-viral software and install a firewall.
  • Keep your operating systems updated.    
  • Delete and block spam or junk emails.  Be careful when opening attachments or using internet downloads.
  • Secure and encrypt wireless networks when using WiFi (Wireless Internet access).
  • Make sure your internet browser and any plug-ins are updated (e.g. Flash, Java, Silverlight)
  • Use reputable companies when shopping online.
  • Use secure payment methods, such as PayPal or credit cards for online purchases.
  • Avoid scams, criminal gangs operate ‘scams’ and use the internet as one of the methods to defraud people and business.  i.e. asking for money to pay for travel, finance a sick relative, or winning the lottery.
    • They will also try passing off as your bank and ask for your banking details.
    • or Microsoft or your internet provider stating your computer has been corrupted and want you to click on a link or download some software. 
  • Backup important data - like photographs, music, videos or documents and not just to the cloud.

NB: If it’s too good to be true – then it probably is!

Do the update by cyber aware

Downloading #softwareupdates are key to staying secure online, but stats show the most common reason Brits don't, is that it takes too long!

Protect your identity

Remember if you share any pictures or information with anyone online you will lose control of it.  In the simplest terms, if you do not want the world to know something, don't put it on the internet.

Help and advice

If you feel you have been a victim of cyber crime either email 101 call 101 or contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040. 

Register your property to protect it.

The Owl and the CopyCat: Beware the fake websites

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