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So How Did I Become a Victim of Cyber Crime?

FDPN-Cyber CrimeThis is no doubt a common question some of us would ask. How did these people get my e-mail address to send me all this SPAM, or this Phising Attack?

Well apart from the reselling of your personal details by some of the services you may have subscribed to or the “fancy” must have tool bar which harvest all of your data. There are much seemingly harmless or less sinister means of criminals getting your e-mail address.

It’s called ignorance and lack of education. The problem is that most people believe they’re computer literate, and those who confess to be less than novices do not bother to do anything about getting the skills or the information they need to protect themselves and their families.

It’s widely thought that almost 1 in every 4 personal computers are unprotected from malware! Why is this figure so significant? Take a look at the mail below, the dreaded mass e-mailer!

Thousand Plus eMail Recipients

The figure in the red box is unbelievable. Now the person sending the mail should not use the Carbon Copy or the To, fields to put the recipients of the mail. I gave the send my e-mail address, I didn’t give them permission to share it will 1043 other people!

But based on the statistic stated earlier more than 250 PC’s used to view the mail are likely not to have any malware protection and therefor more than likely have some sort of botnet and other malware checking their address book, e-mail and key stokes!

That’s the first step. The second is what has been termed Fat Finger/Thumb syndrome where users “unwittingly” click on a link in an e-mail from a friend or perhaps a well known and trusted brand, which will take the user to a “spoof” or fake site or to a virus invested web page from where the user’s PC would be inundated with a barrage of viruses.

This is an example I received recently.

Sample Phishing Mail

So the hope is that the recipient will click on the links which will have some software to capture their username and password.

Once they have that more research indicates that the password might not even have been necessary to get, in that it may have been very easy to guess, Password for example or 12345678. However once they have it, being human and therefor often lazy the same password would be used for all or most of the user’s online accounts!

So now you know just how easy it is to get your details. I have not yet touched on social media! Consider your FaceBook “friends” you know the 500+, 1000+ or even 1500+ people you’re “friends with”, who in reality might be the 3rd cousin of your primary school class mate you friended. Or someone who you met at a trade show 5 years ago!? Well a quarter of them have no anti-virus protection on their PC, now if they don’t protect their PC’s do you think they would have secured their privacy settings on Facebook? So when you post or share things with them, you may have posted publicly!

These are just a few examples and considerations, but what should be clear is that “a little knowledge” can be dangerous and it’s putting you and potentially your business at risk! Get the skills you need and get your staff the training and education they need to stop putting your business at risk.