We live in a world of technology. Its importance is undeniable, as it has changed our lives immensely and still continues to do so. Most of us consider technology to be a boon, but with the increase in cyber crime, this notion has been put to question time and again. Cyber crime has become one of the most significant global issues as it is found quite difficult to investigate and prosecute, with even eminent and educated individuals falling prey to cybercriminals.
Cyber crime is most commonly related to financial fraud. Evolving rapidly in this century, cyber crime has been affecting India quite significantly. Globally, India ranks third in terms of cyber crime and second in terms of targeted attacks. The USA is the most affected by cyber crime, followed by China. In India, the number of cases rose 19 times between 2005 and 2014 - from 481 in 2005 to 9,622 in 2014. India ranks second in terms of phishing (manipulating emails and website links) and spam. Phishing is high in India because we are naturally curious to click on the links that show us something attractive. It's a tendency that we can't ignore, but by spreading awareness regarding cyber threats, we could reduce it to some extent. Elderly people are mostly the targets of phishing, as they have less knowledge on cyber crime. Today, let us discuss how to prevent cyber crime.
The truth is that our parents want to understand and use technology to connect to our online life. They want to see the pictures we post, send us emails, and transfer money. The danger arises from the fact that their knowledge of internet security is close to nothing. Common online threats against seniors are phishing schemes, credit card fraud, identity theft, impostor scams, etc.
Some of the elders are very keen on learning and adapting to new technologies, while others still don’t know how to operate a mobile properly. There have been incidents recorded all around India wherein cybercriminals have targeted aged people by making calls and asking them for personal information such as credit/debit card details. Soon after they give the information, they end up losing their money. Such incidents could seriously impact our parents’ finances.
There are many ways in which our parents could get affected by cyber crime. Let us take a look at a few of them:
They tend to give out personal information easily when a person claiming to be from the bank calls them.
Most elders become victims of cyber crime during investments.
Also, most of them become victims to healthcare or health insurance-related frauds.
They might click on an email that makes them believe to have won a cash prize or an amazing deal.
There are certain things that cyber criminals look for in targets, and our parents often fulfill those requirements, which are as follows:
Cybercriminals target people who have excellent credit scores. The aged and middle-aged people fall under this category as they are likely to have a good credit history.
Our parents tend to trust unknown individuals easily.
If defrauded our parents are likely to not disclose to anyone.
They lack knowledge regarding the techniques and tools that hackers use.
They are less likely to change their passwords.
Here is a quick guide to keep your parents safe online:
The first thing you need to do is to educate your parents about cyber crime and cyber security.
Teach them about spam and malicious emails and explain that clicking such links could corrupt the device or the account.
Teach them how to organize their inbox.
Ask them to not download anything from suspicious emails.
Educate them about the secured sites for money transactions.
Teach them to be vigilante by advising them to not share their personal/card details to anybody.
Over 60% of online fraud is through mobile platforms. Try educating them about all the important aspects of mobiles.
Hence, it is highly advisable to have a small chat with your parents and help them out before they fall prey to cybercriminals. With an increase in the rate of cyber crime in India, it is our due responsibility to educate not only our parents but also the society at large regarding cyber crime.