5 Little Known Crimes That Could Empty Your Bank Account

We rarely hear about entrepreneurs making breakthroughs outside technology. This is because technologically-oriented startups make far better press stories. It’s thrilling to read about someone like Jan Koum who went from living on food stamps to making billions overnight selling a software called WhatsApp. In comparison, it’s not that exciting to read about someone like Mohammed Yunus, who launched the Grameen Bank Project to offer poor entrepreneurs a chance to avoid being exploited by money lenders. While both are entrepreneurs, most people have heard about Koum, but few about Yunus.

In actuality, technology is only one industry that encourages entrepreneurial-minded people. Millions of entrepreneurs thrive in non-technical industries. Innovation sweeps across all industries. However, even entrepreneurs who prosper outside technology have to use computers to run their business.

Imagine this Scenario

Imagine you’re an entrepreneur who has discovered an amazingly effective diet and exercise plan to improve the results people get from cross-fitness training. Using your system people can quickly build lean muscle, burn layers of fat, and be as super fit as Navy Seals. They look great and feel awesome.

As a result of publicity through your books, television talk shows, infomercials, and talks at fitness expos, your business is now growing at an exponential rate.

Since you’re a fitness-guru, you may not spend much time with computers, other than using your smartphone to keep track of your busy schedule. Instead, you spend most of your time in gyms, health food stores, and coaching facilities teaching people how to apply your revolutionary new cross-fitness routine.

Still, despite your non-technical work, your employees will need to use computers, networks, and even cloud infrastructure to build your brand, market your books, and sell your DVDs.

Since technology is not your forte, you may be reluctant to follow the advice of your well-paid IT staff when they ask you to invest in high-quality firewalls and internet security software in general. As far as you’re concerned, your operating costs are already far too high.

However, if you do decide not to pay attention to your IT people, you will be in for a rude shock in 2016 because cybercrime is only getting worse.

Your reluctance to invest in cybersecurity may stem from insufficient time and patience to understand technical issues or you believe it’s unnecessary to heavily invest in cybersecurity systems when you could be spending your money on improving your online marketing efforts.

However, here’s what you need to know:

If you don’t take strong measures to keep your tech infrastructure safe, cybercriminals could destroy your entire business almost overnight.

Forget Vito Corleone (The Godfather)

When people think of criminals, they usually think of ruthless mafia-types or gangs of thugs spoiling for a street brawl. Brawn, without brain.

But the most dangerous criminals on the planet today don’t look intimidating. In fact, they may look like college geeks. But their high IQs are used to commit crimes that would make Marlon Brando’s Godfather character Vito Corleone blush in shame. Hackers may not look intimidating, but their crimes make his money racketeering look like a high school prank.

5 Common Cybercrimes

Hackers mainly specialize in financial identity theft

Here are 5 ways they commit these cybercrimes:

Cybercrime # 1: Vulnerabilities

Hackers look for flaws in software code that can be exploited to compromise computers and networks. When software companies discover these vulnerabilities, they fix them and send security patches. Hackers look for older programs that have not applied these patches.

Cybercrime #2: Spyware

Hackers trick people into downloading spyware onto their computers. This spyware can come from accepting a malicious End User License Agreement from an application. If can come from direct-file sharing connections. It can come from using instant messengers. And it can be downloaded from email messages. This spyware makes itself hard to detect.

Cybercrime #3: Spam

Cybercriminals send spam via email and instant messaging. By clicking on a link, you might download spyware, worms, viruses, and Trojan horses.

Cybercrime #4: Malware

Hackers send spam via email and instant messaging. Malware can also come from websites, downloads from peer-to-peer sites, and exploiting vulnerabilities in code.

Cybercrime #4: Phishing

Hackers use phishing email messages trick people into entering their username and passwords into fake websites that mimic actual payment processing or banking websites. Hackers can then get access to bank and credit card accounts.

Cybersecurity Measures

While behavior modifications (e.g. not responding to instant messages from an unknown source asking you to click on a link) and the use of better passwords (alphanumeric with characters) will go a long way in preventing cybercrimes, the best security remains the use of comprehensive security software. This software should be able to manage physical, virtual, cloud, and hybrid environments.

Comprehensive, multi-layered software may include the following:

  • Anti-malware with web reputation
  • Host-based firewall
  • Intrusion detection/prevention
  • Integrity monitoring
  • Log inspection
  • Globally trusted SSL certificates

A Word from the President

Earlier this year, President Obama visited Stanford University to speak at the White House Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection

During his speech, he said: “When companies get hacked, Americans’ personal information, including their financial information, gets stolen. Identity theft can ruin your credit rating and turn your life upside down. In recent breaches, more than 100 million Americans had their personal data compromised, including, in some cases, credit card information.”

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Chad

I'm a co-founder and writer here at Unfinished Man. I write, manage the look and feel of the website, and make sure that nothing breaks. I also reply to the vast majority of our emails, so if you're sending one through, I suggest you be nice. Everyone says I'm the least offensive of our writers, so they gave the email jockey task to me. When I'm not improving the site, I write about fashion, video games, politics, and anything related to science and technology.

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