The RCMP Crime Prevention theme for November is Cybercrime.
Online crime is a global issue, which has a huge effect on everyone. Cybercrime is criminal activity that either targets or uses a computer, a computer network or a networked device.
Some of the most common computer and internet cybercrime are:
- Phishing – Email and Internet Fraud
- Harassment / Sextortion
- Ransomware Attacks
- Identify Fraud
- Child Pornography & Solicitation
- Account Hacking
- Drug Trafficking
- Credit Card Fraud
So much of society depends on the internet, computers, tablets and/or cellular devices on a daily bases, it is easy for someone to fall prey to cybercrime.
Some tips from Sgt. Sarah Parke from the Bonnyville RCMP for individuals to protect themselves from online crime include:
- Don’t reuse passwords, change them often, and be sure to use a combination of letters, numbers and special characters to create a strong one.
- Many websites, especially social media platforms, offer the option of multi-factor authentication. Multi-factor authentication makes it more difficult for criminals to access your accounts by needing more than one piece of identifying information. When this is an option take advantage of it.
- Review privacy settings regularly in order to control who can see what personal information is posted to your profile.
- Buy from reputable sources and don’t let unbeatable prices cloud your judgement.
- Avoid conducting financial transactions via public Wi-Fi.
- Install updates on your devices as soon as you’re prompted. Updates fix security issues.
- Phishing is a commonly used tactic for cyber crime. Phishing messages ask you to validate information by clicking links and may threaten you with legal action. Verify legitimacy by calling the company directly.
For more information on cybercrime, please visit: www.canada.ca/en/services/