Any offence where criminals use technology to break the law is classed as online crime.
We've put together some advice and further reading on how you can protect your business against the threat of cyber attacks.
If you have been a victim of cyber-crime report it to Action Fraud Or you can ring 0300 123 2040.
Does your business allow employees and visitors to use their personal devices, including mobile phones, tablets and personal laptops for work purposes?
Whilst there may be positive benefits, it is important to be aware of the potential security risks, including potential malware infection and the compromise of corporate information.
Get Safe Online has advice on what the risks are and diminishing some of these.
Online criminals then threaten to either destroy or block this data until the victim pays a ransom.
Ransomware usually gets installed onto a computer either by being hidden within, or disguised as, a legitimate file that the user is tricked into downloading or opening when it arrives as an email attachment.
Fraudsters generally request the ransom in digital currencies such as Ukash and Bitcoin, which are very difficult to trace.
The South West Regional Cyber Crime Unit advises against the payment of ransom demands. This is for three reasons:
For the latest updated advice against ransomware prevention visit the no more ransom website.
The fraudster contacts a finance officer, sometimes claiming to be in another country, asking for payments to be made into bank accounts under the pretence of a highly sensitive acquisition, merger or property purchase.
The initial contact is usually by email from an address similar to the one the CEO would use, although the suspect will telephone to complete the fraud if required. In addition, the fraudster may also work with a second fraudster, who poses as a lawyer or regulator.
The fraudster, as the CEO, then claims to be very busy and asks not to be contacted further. Sometimes they may pick occasions when the real CEO is on holiday, therefore preventing the officer from checking the validity of the request.
After being identified by fraudsters, staff are being monitored during their days off and then gradually befriended.
Typically the fraudsters look to exploit the staff member by either offering a financial lump sum for the account information or by exploiting disgruntled or unhappy staff. The information they require from the staff member is usually customer profile information such as birthdays and maiden names. The fraudsters already have the account number details.
If you believe you are being groomed by a fraudster, please let your employer know immediately and call the police on 101.
The scam starts with an email/phone call from fraudsters overseas who claim they are interested in 'investing' in new start-up companies within the UK.
The fraudsters build trust and over time convince victims that the money they are transferring into their business accounts is for 'investments'. The fraudsters know the limits that will be flagged by each bank and only transfer small amounts at a time to avoid detection.
These investments are in fact a vehicle to launder the proceeds of crime into the UK from other scams, including money lost from victims of online dating fraud.
Some steps you can take
If you have been, or suspect you may have been a victim of this scam, report it to Action Fraud on their website or by calling 0300 123 2040