Take steps to protect your online worlds

  |  Published: Oct 7th 2016

Online crime – or cyber crime – covers different crimes that take place, are arranged or assisted by online use.

This can be anything from fraud and email scams through to hacking, viruses, pornographic and indecent images, harassment and paedophilia.

Cyber Crime has risen significantly in recent years and anyone can become a target. Latest figures estimate nearly six million fraud and cyber crimes are committed a year, with one in 10 people falling victim.

Statistics suggest that fraud is the most common type of crime and around 70% of this is online-related.

However, it is thought that 80% of cases could be avoided if people took simple steps to protect themselves while online:

  • Use a strong password to keep your details safe. This should contain upper and lower case letters, numbers and symbols.
  • Never give your personal details out online. Banks and companies will never ask for sensitive information via email or phone.
  • Make sure you are using up to date internet security, including on your mobile phone.
  • Ensure you have installed the latest operating system
  • Edit your privacy settings on social media and make sure only your friends can see your updates and information.

September 2016 saw the launch of #ProtectYourWorld – stay safe online cyber crime campaign by Thames Valley Police to raise awareness and encourage everyone to take simple steps to protect themselves.

It is important that you never feel embarrassed to report it if you believe you have been a victim of cyber crime:

  • Online fraud - Action Fraud www.actionfraud.police.uk  or call 0300 123 204
  • Other online crime (including bullying/harassment) – report to police on 101.

For more information, see www.thamesvalley.police.uk/cybercrime or Get Safe Online www.getsafeonline.org


Inspector Chris Young, Rural NHPT, Aylesbury Vale

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