In recent year there have been a number of high profile scams that cybercriminals have instigated, some have been impersonating a tax official stating that the individual is due a tax refund, others have been on social websites for example how to get more likes to an individual posts. All of these scams are designed for hackers to get access to personal setting of the individual.
In simple terms, many scams still rely on the poor security habits of the general public to succeed.
However, one particular scam has involved cybercriminals purporting to be Google. The cybercriminal gets access to the individuals email address and phone number; both of which can be easily obtained, the attacker poses as the individual and requests a password reset from Goggle. Google then send the code to the individual, followed up closely with a response from the hacker to the individual that states that there has been a breach in security and use the code from Google to reply and stop unauthorized access. Once the individual has responded to the attackers request, the hacker has access and the individual is not aware they have been attacked.
Another worrying aspect of cyber security has been the use of sextortion; individuals are tempted to access sites that are designed to encourage individuals to share sexually-explicit videos and pictures. The individuals are encouraged to continue the liaison through very clever Apps by revealing personal details such as phone numbers, account details and all of their contacts. It is at this stage that the individual is blackmailed by the attackers, to stop them sending the sexually explicit material to their contact list. Because of the sensitive nature of the individual, many find it difficult to go and report the crime to the authorities that they end up paying vast sums of money to the criminals.
Many social media platforms remain favoured target for scammers. Individuals tend to trust people they have in their social networks, and scammers try to leverage the trust in people social circles to spread scams, fake links and phishing. Many scammers use fake accounts for celebrities or news feeds that may be of interest to the individual and their circle of friends. Once the scammer has got an interest from within the social circle they are on the inside and build up trust with the network and then the articles get shared or retweeted, and then the scammer can have access to a network of friends that trust one another.
Scammers will continue to develop further avenues to exploit people for their personal details, however everyone needs to be vigilant and do not release your personal details to anyone. Make sure that the company data is backed up regularily on a data storage medium.