Knowhow-Now Article

Basic Cyber Crime Prevention

By Andrew Wilson

Andrew Wilson

Cyber crimes have become pandemic in the world today and because of the amazing connectivity that is now available to devices other than PCs, it is to be expected that cyber crime will thrive even more. This makes it urgent for all people who go online to learn how to protect themselves through basic cyber crime prevention.

what is cyber crime

Steps to Prevent Cyber Crime Victimization

1. Learn about the different scams that exist today.

Find out what scams inhabit cyberspace and how these can be avoided. If you are the type of Internet user who does not bother to keep abreast of things (such as latest “phishing” methods) then you might be in for an unpleasant surprise.Phishing is the word used to describe the way hackers lure PC users by planting baits. These baits usually come in the form of “OK” buttons. Once a user clicks these buttons they can be redirected to a site or tricked into revealing personal information. 

2. Use a firewall. 

Firewalls serve to monitor the activities that take place between your PC and the Internet. Your security software will come with a firewall. Use it and if you have a wireless network, enable your router’s firewall. This is an important step in cyber crime prevention.

3. Be careful when you click. 

If you receive links while you are checking your email or while you are chatting on instant messenger, take care that you do not click on these links unless they come from sources you know. Even if you know the person sending the link, if this is unexpected verify from that person first before you click on the link. Remember that some viruses will replicate and spread through the infected PC’s address book.

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cyber Crime

What Is cyber crime?

4. Surf safely.

Avoid web sites that lure you into revealing personal information or pages that contain malware. Use a search engine when you surf; this will automatically correct the address which could have directed you to a fake website. Quite often the fake website will have an address intentionally similar to the real site. This is called “typosquatting”.

5. Shop Safely.

When you shop online make sure that you go to a legitimate site. Before you go to a new site, investigate. Find out if any comments and complaints have surfaced about the site.

6. Look before you pay.

Before you make a payment, look for a “trustmark” such as McAfee SECURE™ to indicate that a site is safe. Before you make an actual payment make sure you see the lock symbol on your browser. This will show you that the site uses scrambling or encryption to keep your information protected. Click on the icon to ensure that safeguard really pertains to the site where you are about to make your payment.

7. Look for the tiny “s”.

When you look at the address bar, see if the address begins with http:// or https://; that small letter “s” indicates that the site uses encryption.

8. Use a credit card.

When it is time to make payments especially to sites you have never used before, use a credit card. If the whole thing turns out to be a scam or if the site is fraudulent, it is easier to stop credit card payments or get reimbursements. This may not be as easy with a debit card.

9. Use strong passwords.

A strong password is one that has at least 10 characters and consists of a combination of letters, numbers and special characters. The name of your pet, your birthday and your middle name may be easy to remember but they are also easy to hack.

10. Change your password regularly.

Some people keep the same password for years. This is dangerous and does nothing to keep your personal information safe.

Learning to protect yourself while going online has become an essential survival skill because cyberspace is now a virtual jungle where cyber crime predators roam. Fortunately, with a little earnest effort, anyone can learn basic cyber crime prevention.

Cyber Crime Protection:

The ten tips in the article above will give you a head start on cyber criminals who want to steal your identity and money!

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