To What Extent Can Cybercriminals Touch You In a Personal Way?

It’s now a known fact that cybercrime is on the rise across the USA and around the globe.  

Hackers, known as the ‘invisible criminals,’ want access to your personal info. Simply put, they want your money and they want to steal your identity. 

The more we do online – bank, communicate, and share info – then the more we are at risk of being victims. You might think that your passwords and data on your smartphone, tablet, laptop and desktop are all protected, but think again. After all, hacking these days is big business: some hackers reportedly earn between $80,000 to $100,000 a month, according to Business Insider (BI), a leading online commerce and tech publication for consumers and business owners. 

Beware of Hackers and Stay Protected

There are scores of ways hackers can access your personal data. 
One popular method is through emails containing viruses and malware, and once you open them malicious software is downloaded onto your computer, giving a hacker access to your computer. 

Phishing is another way hackers can access your personal info. While it’s one of the oldest techniques for hackers, it’s still used to this very day. The process of phishing involves emails that are sent to individuals and they appear to be from legitimate banks or reputable organizations. Beware - once you click on the link in the email and enter your personal information (name, passwords, and banking details, etc.), you just gave the farm away. These links that you might click on may also install viruses, malware or even spyware on your computer and this is never a good thing. 
Hackers are also known to send out mass emails as a way to detect weaknesses among users, and when a firewall is compromised the cyber-crooks have access to your computer. 
While social networking sites are popular these days for many us, hackers are finding ways through these channels to access your personal info. This includes them setting up fake profiles and sending emails requesting personal info or links to malicious websites that seek to gain your personal info. 

Other ways hackers can get access your computer is through them hijacking ads, or through the sale of malware that’s sold as a legitimate product.         

As technology is advancing, cybercriminals are still finding all sorts of ways to take our hard earned money. With this, there are more cases of ransomware occurring. Cybercriminals are finding ways to lock devices and they demand a fee to unlock them. Some hackers will even go to the extent of accusing you of committing crimes and threaten to notify your contacts via email or social media websites. 

Mobile payments are another concern and leading security companies in the U.S. highly anticipate that cybercriminals will make a huge effort to crack into it as a way to steal money and personal data. Another cause for concerns is new mobile malware that aims at Android and Apple devices. 

Again, hackers want steal your money and your identity, so be aware of this at all times. And remember, if you think you are not at risk of being hacked, think again. Everyone out there who uses a computer or mobile device is a potential victim. Never take for granted that your personal information is safe in our ever-so-growing-connected world. 

Ask the Expert: Norton by Symantec 

Norton by Symantec offers key cybercrime prevention tips.
  • Keep your computer current with the latest patches and updates
  • Make sure your computer is configured securely 
  • Choose strong passwords and keep them in a safe spot
  • Protect your computer with security software
  • Protect your personal information
  • Online offers that look to good to be true usually are
  • Review your bank accounts and credit card statements regularly 

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