The Dangers
The Risks
   

The Risk - Online Fraud & Crime

See Also Spam, Surfing, Crime

 

The Danger of Online Fraud and Crime

Identity theft is the fastest growing aspect of online fraud and is executed mainly in one of two ways:-

1) Phishing Emails

Phishing emails are emails claiming to come from a bank or a financial institution, claiming that a recent transaction could not be completed due to some invalid information that you need to update. At the bottom of the email is a link to the "Bank's website" where you log in and revalidate your information. The link is not to the bank but a spoof website which looks like the bank's. When you log in with your username and password, they immediately capture your information, log into your bank and transfer funds out of it and disappear. Such theft is costing the banks millions of pounds every year.


Examples of Phishing Emails

Example 1

Example 2

Both examples have links at the bottom of the email claiming to go to paypal and the web address shown is correct but where the hyperlink actually takes you to is a dummy server which looks identical to the real one. You will note that both these emails state that you must respond within a short time, this is because the criminals cannot risk leaving that server up long or they may get caught.

2) Viruses

Many viruses today have been developed to record computer keystrokes. The virus infects your PC from either an email attachment or downloaded onto your PC while surfing the Internet, and everything you type on your keyboard is logged. When you go to your online banking your access security details are also recorded. The virus then uploads the keystroke log file to the criminals who invented the virus which provides them access to your account and money.

To find out more about how to protect yourself from fake websites visit the UK Goverment information site:-

getsafeonline.org

The Solution

There are two main issues in dealing with fraud

1) Phishing Email

A good way to deal with Phishing email is to subscribe to a service which checks your email before it arrives and also removes phishing emails. A service that provides this is clearmail and not only does it stop Phishing Emails but prevents other spam emails arriving and blocks emails with virus attachments.


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2) Viruses

To prevent viruses you need an up to date Anti-Virus program which is good and reliable. Avira is fast and good at catching viruses.



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