cybercrime

Hooded hacker. Cyber attack concept.

Cybercrimes are quite common these days with criminals developing new ways of attack. About 8 out of 10 people in the US or at least someone they know have been victims. These attacks are used to steal passwords, account numbers, and address books, among other sensitive information. When there are numerous ways that cybercriminals may use to attack, the following five are the most committed cybercrime.

Malware Attacks

Malware is malicious software that presents itself in different forms, including trojans, worms, and spyware. This malware is used to phish and breach confidential information through:

  • Spying your keystrokes
  • controlling your computer remotely
  • Stealing documents and information store on your computer

Ransomware is the most notorious type of malware attack nowadays. It is used to lock networks and devices remotely until the affected organization pays a specified ransom. The most common culprits of this cyber attack are hospitals and law firms due to the sensitive nature of the information they hold.

You can avoid being a victim of a malware attack by:

  • Avoiding suspicious sites
  • Verifying the legitimacy of email attachments before you open them
  • Having an up-to-date antivirus on all devices

Phishing

In this case, cybercriminals use malicious sites to pose a legitimate website to get hold of your personal information. Phishing attempts arrive as emails, text messages, or voicemail from trusted individuals or organizations. These seem genuine and contain a call to action asking to verify your email or other details to trick you into sharing your personal information. Avoid becoming a victim by never clicking links or opening attachments before confirming with the sender.

Data Breaches

Online data breaches can occur in various ways, including malware attacks, phishing, and credential stuffing, whereby the attackers get access to your online credentials. In most cases, this type of cybercrime targets retailers, credit cards, and banks. Once the criminals get your account username and password, they can use it to withdraw all your money or make massive purchases using your credit card.

You can avoid becoming a data breach victim by:

  • Using a strong and unique password across all your accounts
  • Changing your account password regularly
  • Avoid sharing or saving your password and username on public computers
  • Using different passwords for various accounts
  • Having a dedicated computer for banking and another for other daily internet access

Credit/ Debit Card Fraud

This crime has been around for a long time but has increased in recent years due to the rise in online shopping and cybercrimes. Mostly, you fall a victim when you:

  • Share your credit card number on malicious websites
  • Use public Wi-Fi where a hacker may be waiting
  • There’s a breach of the internal business system

You can protect yourself from credit or debit card fraud by:

  • Reading your credit card report regularly
  • Closely monitoring your accounts
  • Using credit card monitoring services

Identity Theft

This form of cybercrime is on the rise due to the increase in computer networks and data sharing. It’s one of the nastiest things that can happen to you as once the hackers get access to your personal information, they use it to open a new line of credit. When this happens, most of your assets are put at risk and this can lead to long-term adverse effects on your finances. Identity theft can cripple your ability to:

  • Open accounts
  • Make huge purchases
  • Receive owed benefits

Protect yourself from this attack by diligently monitoring your accounts and credit cards for any suspicious transactions. You should report any dubious transactions to the necessary authority. Also, make sure you change your password regularly and enable two-step verification to confirm all transactions.

Bottom Line

The above cyber crimes are common nowadays and are capable of crippling your finances or releasing personal information to the public. You, therefore, need to stay vigilant about the possibility of attacks. Always have an updated anti-virus on all devices and make sure you confirm the legitimacy of any site before accessing it.