As more and more people around the world become the victims of cybercrimes, law enforcement agencies have the ever-growing challenge of training and equipping their organizations to handle cyber investigations and capture the cyber criminals.
What can you do if you become the victim of a cybercrime? Report it! Here are the steps you should take upon discovering the victimization:
1. Contact your local police department’s non-emergency number (unless you believe your life is in danger) to enquire about filing a police report for the cybercrime incident, and to determine the degree of investigative capabilities in the department to handle your case.
2. Next, report all suspicious activities or instances of victimization to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center.
3. Contact your financial institutions, credit companies, and any other businesses that were impacted by the crime.
Some helpful tips on how to protect yourself from becoming a future victim
- Request new debit and credit cards from your financial institutions once or twice a year. You’ll receive new numbers and won’t have to pay for the new cards. Change your PIN on a regular basis. Monitor your credit report annually.
- Don’t over-share on social media. Protect your image and personal info.
- Never open an email or link from someone you don’t know.
- Never share passwords or personal info with an untrusted source. When in doubt, call the institution to clarify the situation.
- Limit the number of online payments you make.
- Only complete online payments on secured (https) websites from a password-protected computer. Using your smartphone or tablet on a wifi network gives bad guys and gals an easy way to capture your info.
- Use security software on your devices and perform routine checks to ensure your system is bug-free.
- Make sure all of your passwords are complex and are not related to any of your personal information that may make it easier for bad guys and gals to guess.
- Change your passwords on a regular basis. Passwords should be at least 10-15 characters in length.
- Never re-use passwords!