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What is fraud?

Fraud is one of the most commonly committed crimes in the UK. Many crimes fall under the umbrella of fraud and the underlying factor found in fraud-related crimes is the dishonest intention on the perpetrator’s part. Crimes that fall within fraudulent crimes include tax-related frauds, cybercrimes, money laundering and mortgage and property fraud. A fraud solicitor is kept very busy as fraudulent crimes are committed daily.

What is cyber fraud?

Cyber fraud is a very commonly committed crime in the UK and around the world. However, cyber fraudsters mainly target the UK, in particular, from other countries. So, what exactly is cyber fraud? It refers to any criminal activity whereby the fraudsters operate from behind a computer. According to national statistics, fraud crimes cost the UK between £130 billion and £195 billion a year.

How is cyber fraud committed?

The most common way that cyber fraud is committed is through the internet and computers. Criminals will hide behind a screen and befriend vulnerable individuals and then try to steal their details to gain access to their money.

Elderly people are usually the main targets for such criminals and they are contacted through telephone. Often the elderly are lonely and want someone to talk to; therefore, they would be more likely to befriend strangers as it is a voice on the other end of the line for them. Once the criminal has managed to gain their victim’s trust by getting comfortable and familiar with them, they will choose the opportune moment to start requesting money from the victim.

man hacking a computer

Other types of cyber fraud to be aware of

More recently, there has been an increase in the number of scams and hackings that take place in the UK daily. Hacking is when the criminal is able to view all personal and financial details by getting unauthorised access to the victim’s phone, computer or laptop. So how is this access gained? Scammers and hackers are very intelligent and trained in this crime. They have a lot of experience and knowledge in programming and gaining access to a victim’s details over the internet.

We have all seen a form of scam in our everyday lives and a few examples include telephone calls claiming the criminal is a reputable and trusted company seeking to assist the victim in one way or another; text messages and emails telling the victim to click links to reveal something enticing. These are all very simple methods through which hackers and scammers can gain access to personal information.

How to avoid being a victim

Everyone needs to be aware of the tell-tale signs of cybercrime and hacking. As criminals usually target vulnerable people, it has become even more important to educate the public on this and make them cyber-aware. A lot of elderly people do not use the internet and, therefore, think they are safe; however, they must understand that there are other ways of being attacked. Ensure to not click on links that ask you to add or change your details and never give personal details to anyone over the phone or the internet.

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