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Cyber Security Awareness Month 2014

With internet technology advancing at a rapid pace, people who go online are increasingly susceptible to cybercrimes, including identity theft, stolen PINs, and hacking.   As of 2012, approximately 73 percent of Americans have been victims of cybercrime, according to the Multi-State Information Sharing & Analysis Center (MS-ISAC).

Massachusetts follows in the footsteps of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) by recognizing October as National Cyber Security Awareness Month.

Cyber Safety and Cybercrime

The internet enables people to conduct everyday transactions from anywhere, at any time, including the convenience of online commerce. As we become more dependent on this technology, we also become more exposed to the threat of cybercrime. By taking some simple cybersecurity steps, you can better safeguard yourself against it.

Identity Theft and Personal Safety

Properly managing your personal information and being more aware of your online activity can reduce the risk of identity theft. There are several ways identity theft can occur, including hacking. However, a large number of cases involve the online user giving away or verifying their personal information through email scams or phishing incidents, with 75 million of these scams sent every day, according to MS-ISAC.

Taking care of your online security can be a complicated task, but ensure that some actions are prioritized.

  • Be aware of suspicious emails from people or addresses you don’t know.
  • Prioritize ePrivacy by only opening email attachments if you are expecting them from someone.
  • Create secure passwords (12 characters or more, containing uppercase and lowercase letters as well as numbers or symbols).

Additional Internet Safety Resources

By participating in DHS’s cybersecurity campaign, Massachusetts aims to raise awareness of these issues so residents can ensure their safety and security online.

If you or someone you know has been a victim of a cybercrime, contact your local police department or the Cyber Crime Division of the Attorney General’s Office (AGO).

Have questions or comments? Share below or tweet us @MassGov.

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