Technology has given us many benefits to our daily lives, but it also brought some negative things with it as well. This lesson will take you through what cybercrime is, examples of it, and how it affects our lives.
The Problem Between Technology and Crime
When we think about the purposes of what technology was supposed to achieve for us, what do we usually mention about it? Most will tell you that the whole idea was meant to make our lives easier and better, which was and is still true in many ways today. Unfortunately, technology has also allowed for individuals to carry out the act of committing crimes right from their homes under anonymity. This is known as cybercrime and can be defined as any online criminal act while using a computer or other electronic devices to cause harm to others. It is important to know that there are many different types of online crime and all cases should be taken very seriously. A few examples include identity theft, credit card fraud, sexual harassment and cyberbullying.
This is the world we live in, becoming such a problem that anyone can wreak havoc anywhere across the globe at any given time.
Sharing Too Much Information Online
The dawn of the internet is what started the boom of cybercrime, which is still the ultimate tool criminals use to find and target their prey in today’s society. As an extension of the internet, social media has played a massive role in making it even easier for criminals to carry out their evil intent attacks on others. Facebook, for example, just recently announced that they had crossed two billion active monthly users on the platform. With numbers like that, it just becomes a big playground for the all the would-be and professional online criminals alike.
The biggest mistake most people make while using social media is that they do something called ‘oversharing.’ This means they share much more personal information online in the public space than they should, such as photos of that new TV or fancy sports car they just purchased. People who continuously make their private lives public have a much higher chance of being targeted since others know what they have been doing in their daily lives. The second mistake most people make is by sharing too much information with complete strangers.
Why would anyone want to share their personal lives and delicate information with people they have never seen or met before? It is much more common than you might think, which is something to consider if you accept every single friend request you receive from unknown parties.
Phone and Email Scams
Back when landlines were the dominant method of contacting someone, just about everyone at one time or another had received a few unsolicited or spam calls. The caller was a smooth talker who wanted to gain access to private information, such as banking or social security numbers. This is an example of phishing, and the unfortunate return of these crimes has dramatically risen over the past few years due to the popularity of smartphones. Most of these calls are run by machines using false phone numbers that are always changing, which is a method known as spoofing.
It is very challenging to identify and pinpoint these calls to stop them entirely because of this. These criminals also like to use phone numbers that show up as a local number to your current location. This increases the likelihood that someone might answer the call since the individual might think it was a friend or family member calling from another phone. Banks, businesses, corporations, or the government will never randomly ask for your personal information at any time, so be on the lookout for these crafty calls or emails which claim to be official.
Using Technology For Justice
Since the Internet is open for anyone to use, the good guys protecting others from harm also have the same tools and platforms that criminals use to carry out their crimes. Social media has become the single most excellent tool for the criminal justice system because they can look up information about their suspects online right on the spot. For example, if they need help identifying someone they can find out who their friends are, find those friends on Facebook, and then backtrack through the mutual friends to find their suspect just like that. Oddly enough, many criminals also like to brag and boast about their crimes on social media either before or after committing the crime for all to see online. This allows the justice system to quickly find these criminals and take action against them immediately, with a digital footprint on their social media accounts as evidence.
The ease of technology, such as the Internet and social media platforms, has allowed criminals a means of carrying out illegal activities online against others. They are usually hard to track down and ultimately stop, which is one primary reason why cybercrime is so widespread in today’s society.
We have machines sending out fake calls and emails in order to extract personal information from an individual, known as phishing. We also have strangers who exploit social media by scoping out people who share too much online. The rise of smartphones is something that continues to help these criminals thrive online since these devices are so widely accessible now. At the same time, the criminal justice system can also leverage the power of technology to help stop, find, or prevent these crimes altogether.
We are now looking into using machine learning technologies to help combat cybercrime, which will be a fascinating new way of approaching crime. It is a constant battle of good versus evil, but one that you can expect to continue well into the future.