With the continuous growth of internet users, the risk of privacy breaches has increased. The information we share about ourselves at different times and occasions is often stored permanently and stayed there even after a long time. Tracing someone through the information available online is quite easy and so is causing harm to them. The online world is not as safe as we think. One of the biggest threats to internet users is privacy breaches. These cyberattacks, data breaches, and hacking attempts are an eye-opener, as most of them are unexpected.
How to protect your privacy information
Cybercriminals do a good job of tricking people into clicking on links supposedly from their bank, telecom operator, electric or gas company, tax service, and other legitimate organizations. Think before you click – spelling errors, email addresses that do not seem right, and out-of-the-blue communications from friends should be treated with utmost caution. It is better to manually enter the URL of the organization in question to log into your account to verify any communications before clicking. In doubt, call the organization or your friend to verify before clicking. Do not share passwords or choose one that can be easily guessed. Make sure to change them often. And where possible, use two-factor or strong authentication which combines something you know (username and password) with something you have (a credential such as a card, token or mobile phone) to verify the identity or verify a transaction. You may not know you are being hacked or scammed as some accounts online appear very real, some people actually buy more subscribers for their youtube channel which is fine, but some use bot accounts to create fake numbers to seem legitimate. So it is important to spot the difference.
Types of scams to avoid
You may receive an unsolicited email offering a job, typically not in your area of expertise, often for a mystery shopper or similar position. When you accept, you are paid by check or money order, for an amount greater than your “employer” offered. You are then asked to send back the difference, only to discover the original check or money order was fake, and you are out of the money you sent to your fake employer. With the rise of career networking sites like LinkedIn, unsolicited job offers are becoming more and more common, which means that anyone hungry for work has to become savvy at sifting through the legitimate offers from the scams. If you decide to accept work, never cash suspicious checks without ensuring they are authentic.
To be sure, ask your bank to place a “hold” on the funds until the check or money order is verified. Any time you are asked to send back the “difference,” this should be a sign that you are involved with a scam. You meet someone through a dating website or chat room, you start to get to know each other, and it can feel very real. However, you can never be sure who’s on the other side of your screen. If you find yourself in an online relationship with someone who begins to ask for money or to see intimate photos, or asks you to redirect items they send you, then the person you have met is a scammer. “Catfishers,” as they are sometimes called, often use the identity of a real person to seem authentic and to provide real details, but they are sending fake photos and contact information to cover their tracks. You must be wary of these different types of scams, and there are many more that people are not familiar with. It is important to secure your information and ensure your privacy is protected.