The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) believe that greater awareness can help prevent citizens and businesses from becoming victims of cybercrime.
Everyone is a target for malicious online activity, including youth, businesses and government offices. Cybercriminals extort money and personal data from unsuspecting victims by taking advantage of low cyber security awareness. Individuals and businesses can take steps to protect their data by managing risks, reducing threats and minimizing harm.
To better protect yourself online:
Beware of unsolicited emails demanding personal information or immediate payment;
Use strong passwords that include capital and lower case letters, numbers and special symbols and change them regularly;
Use multi-factor authentication for your social media accounts;
Back up critical files to an external drive; and,
Keep your security systems updated.
Children and youth are exposed to the digital world early, adding additional risk to their safety and well-being. Parents and caregivers are encouraged to discuss online behaviours and provide tips to their children on how to stay safe online. Resources and information on topics such as cyberbullying and child exploitation can be found at cybertip.ca.
If you or someone you know suspects they have been targeted by digital or online cybercrime, contact your local police service or local OPP detachment, the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).