Radcliffe Blog

Cybercrime on the rise: Make yourself a harder target

By April 22, 2024 No Comments

Cybercrime is a global issue that affects businesses and individuals worldwide.

  • UK residents have received over 208 million scam emails.
  • Over 69,000 cases of identity theft were reported in the UK.
  • 50% of UK businesses have been a victim of cybercrime.
  • 25% of UK consumers believe they will fall victim to cybercrime in the future.

Criminals use information about you that’s available online (including on social media sites) to make their phishing messages more convincing.

You can reduce the likelihood of being phished by thinking about what personal information you (and others) post about you, and by reviewing your privacy settings within your social media accounts.

 

How do you prevent Cyber Crime?

Preventing cybercrime involves taking proactive measures to protect yourself and your personal information from cyber threats.

Here are some key steps you can take to prevent cybercrime:

Setup Two-factor authentication (2FA) wherever possible. Use strong, complex passwords.

 

Be cautious of suspicious emails or websites.

 

 

Use antivirus software on your computers, tablets, and smartphones.

 

 

Practice safe browsing.

 

Educate yourself.

 

Backup your data.

 

Keep your software up to date on your computers, tablets, and smartphones.

 

 

 

Multi-factor authentication (MFA)

Passwords can be easy to obtain or steal from a cybercriminal. With cybercrime rapidly increasing, it is important to add extra security layers wherever possible.

The most common authentication method that goes ‘beyond passwords’ is to implement multi-factor authentication (MFA), also known as two-factor authentication (2FA) or 2-step verification (2SV).

Accounts that have been set up with MFA require the individual to provide a second factor, which is something that only the user can access. The second factor can include:

  • PIN codes or a string of characters, often sent to the user via SMS (text message) or email.
  • a security token that the user must physically connect to their device (such as via USB).
  • biometric details (such as a fingerprint scan, or facial recognition).
  • an app on a trusted device (such as those provided by Microsoftor Google).

As an example, you may already have 2FA setup if you use online banking on your smartphone.

 

Phishing scams: If you’ve shared sensitive information

What to do if you’ve been the victim of a scam, or you’ve been tricked into sharing info such as passwords or bank details.

Cyber criminals may contact you via email, text, phone call or via social media. They will often pretend to be someone (or an organisation) you trust.

If you’ve been tricked into sharing personal information with a scammer, you can take immediate steps to protect yourself.

 

Situation

 

Action
 

You’ve provided your banking details.

 

 

Contact your bank and inform them.

 

You think your account has already been hacked. You may have received messages sent from your account that you don’t recognise, or you may have been locked out of your account, refer to guidance on recovering a hacked account.
You received the message on a work laptop or phone.

 

Contact your IT department and let them know.

 

You opened a link on your computer or followed instructions to install software. Open your antivirus (AV) software if you have it and run a full scan. Allow your antivirus software to clean up any problems it finds.
You’ve given out your password. You should change the passwords on any of your accounts which use the same password.
You’ve lost money. Tell your bank and report it as a crime to Action Fraud (for England, Wales and Northern Ireland) or Police Scotland (for Scotland).

 

If you’ve responded to a scam email

If you’ve lost money or have been hacked as a result of responding to a phishing message, you should report it:

  • In England, Wales or Northern Ireland, visit actionfraud.police.uk or call 0300 123 2040.
  • In Scotland, report to Police Scotland by calling 101.

 

Source: https://www.twenty-four.it/services/cyber-security-services/cyber-crime-prevention/cybercrime-statistics-uk/