Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Quick Guide To Beating Internet Crime - - By Guy Bunker, Symantec internet security

What are the cyber-criminals after? Simple, your information.

The minimum price for credit card details on the underground economy is now just 4p.

A drop of 40% over the past year, according to the latest Internet Security Threat Report from Symantec.

Why? Well because there are so many people selling them and so many of them around.

Of course, other things are for sale as well, including bank account details and various passwords.

However, if you think you don't have much money so they won't be interested in you, then think again.

If the cyber-thief can gather enough information, like your address and a utility bill, then they can open a bank account in your name, followed closely by a credit card or two.

They will run up the debt and the first you will know about it is when you apply for something like a credit card or a mortgage and are refused.

You will then realise that your credit rating is through the floor and you will need to sort out just how someone managed to open an account in your name and prove that it wasn't you, otherwise the liability for the debt will remain with you!

All is not lost, if you have up-to-date anti-virus/anti-malware on your computer then you have taken a step in the right direction - but... what about your new mobile phone?

Is it one which allows you to access the internet, perhaps you do a little internet banking on it, or buy stuff.

If so, then these too are being increasingly targeted by cyber-criminals, so make sure you have security installed on that as well.

What does a cyber-criminal need? Well, they need information which they can sell, but they also need computers and this is where 'bots' come in.

This is where an unsecured computer is taken over by cyber-criminals and used for things like spam and phishing scams.

Did you know around 90% of spam comes from bots? With the push towards greater internet bandwidth and 'fibre to the home' for 2012 the cyber-criminal is also looking to upgrade.

So, if you are going to increase your internet bandwidth then also increase your security and watch out for phishing scams such as those congratulating you on your new service and offering rewards, or utilities which require you to register details or install applications on your PC.

If a cyber-criminal can turn your computer into a bot, then he will use your newly found bandwidth to churn out millions of spam messages a day and you could well end up paying for the bandwidth they use and ultimately miss out on all the great HD programming out there.

Source: skynews

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