“Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.”
-Henry Ford

The more digital our work and private lives become, the more cybercrime becomes a threat. Internet crime can refer to a variety of alien invasions, including but not limited to: business email compromise, data breaches, phishing/spoofing, and online predators. Internet scammers often request personal information like credit card or social identity numbers in exchange for an alleged service. Online predators target teens and children on Facebook or other social media sites.

TIPS

  • Never turning off your computer makes it more susceptible to hackers since many updates that protect software are programmed for when the computer is not in use. (Federal Bureau of Investigation)
  • Scammers often use email to “alert” you to compromised activity in your account. Banks and other legitimate companies will always use the phone or face-to-face outreach to make you aware of any issues in your account (Federal Citizen Information Center)
  • In romance scams on dating sites, female widows are often the primary target. (Krebs on Security)
  • It is essential to keep any evidence if you are a victim: receipts, emails, voicemails, and social media chats can all help expedite the course of an investigation. (National CyberSecurity Alliance)

STATISTICS

  • 50% of sexually exploited victims who online are between 12-15 (Patch)
  • Millennials are the second-largest cohort in the US for losing money through cyber scams: 40% of cyber financial crime victims were 20-29. (Norton Security)
  • Individuals over 80 were the most highly targeted, with a median reported loss of $1,092 per victim. (Norton Security)
  • Compromised business email is the highest-grossing breach for attackers, leading to $1.7 billion in annual losses in the US, most commonly from scammers impersonating as suppliers abroad. (Security Boulevard)

TAKE ACTION

  • You can file a complaint at the Federal Bureau of Investigation here.
  • For identity theft issues, call the Federal Trade Commission hotline – 1-877-IDTHEFT (1-877-438-4338) – or check out the website (identitytheft.gov), which offers individuals resources businesses. (National CyberSecruity Alliance)
  • In other cases, the Office for Victims of Crime has resources and lawyers working on pro bono cases.

Check what they offer in your state at https://ovc.ncjrs.gov/findvictimservices/search.asp