Cybercrime: How To Protect Yourself

If you are not already considering your digital security and where you could be vulnerable, now is the time to do so. Cybercriminals target users on tablets, computers, smartphones and so on. Essentially any device which operates on a network can be targeted by cybercriminals. Most cybercrime is conducted to steal personal information or money. Occasionally, the odd hacker will seek to wreak havoc on users of a particular device or software for political or personal reasons. Cybercrime can include identity theft, money theft and data theft and is carried out by singular people or organised groups. It is vital that we protect ourselves from anyone who wishes to target our data for their own nefarious uses.

What are the different types of cybercrime?

Understanding what a hacker may want to steal from you is the first step in putting a defence in place. The most common types of cybercrime are:

  • * Email fraud.
  • * Money theft.
  • * Identity fraud (personal information is stolen or your identity is falsely used).
  • * Theft of sensitive corporate data.
  • * Cyberextortion (threatening to leak personal data in return for money).
  • * Ransomware.
  • * Phishing (emails or span content sent to users aiming to trick them into giving out personal information).

How common is cybercrime?

As more traditional systems become digitised and more information is stored online, cybercrime has become much more common, rising quickly each year. According to Accenture’s State of Silence Cyber Security Report, cyber attacks increased by 31% between 2020 and 2021. For businesses, a stand-alone cyber attack can cost a staggering $200,000 (Hisco, 2021). A single attack or data breach could result in someone's sensitive data being lost or even their life savings being stolen. The rise of cryptocurrency and the blockchain has also spurred the growth of cybercrime.

Traditionally, stolen funds could have been traced back to the owner when the person who committed the crime tried to spend them, with normal banking being easy to trace. However, in the blockchain, each transaction is anonymous, meaning banks cannot trace stolen funds which have been moved into cryptocurrency. This means a stolen amount of money could be instantly gone, with no hope of finding the stolen money or perpetrator.

How can you protect yourself from cybercrime?

Having anti-virus/ malware installed on our computers, phones, and devices is the first step to protecting ourselves from a cyber attack. Whenever we connect to a new network, especially public wifi, or use Bluetooth out and about, we make ourselves vulnerable to attack. Expert providers like Online Spy Shop provide high-quality yet affordable security products which can mitigate security threats. Anti-viral software not only prevents hackers from accessing your data but also gives you reports on the performance of your system and where it may be weakened. The software routinely performs a deep analysis of your device, identifying possible threats to which your device could be vulnerable in the future. This ability to avoid potential threats and constantly perform deep-rooted scans of your device makes our anti-viral software a worthy investment.