The Internet has brought people closer together. We are able to connect with others not only in our immediate area but across the country and even around the world. We can chat, share pictures and videos, play video games and shop instantly.
Despite its many advantages, there are always dangers online. Reports of hacking attempts, identity theft, and fraud are on the rise. No server or website is ever completely safe from online attacks.
Here Are Some of the Most Common Online Threats:
1. Computer Viruses
Computer viruses have been around for decades. They are complex programs that can spread quickly through email or other programs. Once they’ve made their way into your computer, they can be devastating. Viruses can delete files, impact the performance of different programs, cause your computer to crash constantly or even reformat your hard drive. There are many antivirus programs on the market that do an effective job of preventing dangerous viruses from infecting your computer.
Phishing is a crime where scammers are attempting to gain access to your personal information. The scammer may send you an email, text message or social media inquiry that may seem legitimate. Most of them will usually ask for some of your personal information. They may try to lure you in by saying that they need this information because you’ve won a prize or that they need to confirm such details because your information has been compromised.
You should never provide any personal information to anyone online unless you’re absolutely certain that the request is from a person that you trust. If you have even the slightest reason to be suspicious, chances are it’s a phishing attempt.
Hackers are people who attempt to gain access to personal and business computer systems without permission. There are many different reasons why people try to do this. Some may have a grudge against a person or former employer. Others are simply trying to gain access to their personal or financial data.
Most hackers are computer programmers or programming enthusiasts that have increased interest and knowledge of computer networks. Because of these threats, companies may use Sonicwall firewalls for data loss protection and other security measures. You can also install firewalls on your home computer.
4. Email Bombing
Email bombing isn’t quite as dangerous as it sounds, but it can slow down your computer quite a bit. It’s basically overloading a particular email address with a large number of emails. Certain attempts may try to steal sensitive data, but in many cases, the intention is to slow down or even overload the mail server. This can be very frustrating and time-consuming to fix.
5. Salami Slicing Attacks
No, this has nothing to do with a delicatessen. Salami slicing attacks are attempts by cybercriminals to steal money from a particular person in small increments over time. It is also referred to as penny shaving. This kind of attack is usually done by rounding up to the nearest dollar in financial transactions.
Because the amounts are so minimal, they often go unnoticed for a long time. Such attempts have been featured in television and movies over the year. They’re nowhere near as dangerous as other threats, but that doesn’t make them any less troublesome.
6. Cyber Bullying
Cyberbullying is more prominent among teenagers and children, although it can happen to anyone. It is done by posting photos, videos or statements that are intended to offend a particular person. The bully could be trying to make someone feel embarrassed, ashamed or otherwise uncomfortable. This is often done through social media sites and can have lasting effects on the victim for years. More efforts have been made in recent years to both crack down on cyberbullying and spread anti-bullying messages in schools and on social media.
7. Identity Theft
Identity theft is when a criminal gains access to another person’s information and basically pretends to be that person. This is often done for the purpose of financial gain. Thieves may also use another person’s information and run up credit card bills or other expenses in their name.
By the time the person finds out about what happened, they are often seriously in debt. Most credit card companies take additional security measures to prevent identity theft crimes from happening. Some of these measures include alerting the customer whenever suspicious spending activity has occurred.
8. Sales and Investment Fraud
There are many kinds of online fraud, but sales and investment fraud is a specific form. This is where a person poses as an investment banker or sales rep and contacts people with investment opportunities that are “too good to turn down.” They may have credentials that seem very realistic, and in some cases, may know about past investments that you’ve made. In reality, they are just trying to get your money. If it seems too good to be true, it usually is, especially in these cases.
These are just some of the most common online threats. More and more online crimes are being committed every day. Adding anti-virus and malware programs and installing a good firewall can help to reduce your risks. However, these measures are not always foolproof. Using sound judgment and logic can prevent your confidential information from ending up in the hands of thieves and hackers. The Internet is a wonderful tool. Just make sure that you use it wisely.
More on this topic: Watch Out For Fake Job Scams Online!