BRITAIN’S cybercrime hotspots can be revealed today with some surprising regions most at risk from online fraud.
The top areas where Brits are most at risk from losing thousands of pounds to online scams give an insight into the shadowy underbelly of the web.
Wales tops the list as the number one cybercrime hotspot – with more than 1,267 incidents recorded last year in which victims lost an average of £3,314.
Hackers breaking into email accounts and social media were the biggest cause of financial loss.
Elsewhere, the North West and London are also high on the crime hitlist, coming in second and third.
Research by Ocean Finance discovered a whopping £4.2 million loss in Wales alone and £3.3 million in London, with the capital home to the largest number of victims, recording an outrageous 2,270 incidents.
The figures shone a light on a wave of cybercrime that swept Britain last year.
Hackers often use fake texts or emails containing illegal software to harvest personal data like bank details and account passwords.
The despicable criminals then blackmail victims into handing over huge sums.
Women were more likely to be hit by hackers than men, especially after a number of high-profile female celebrities fell victim to hackers releasing intimate photos in the last few years.
While older people are stereotypically seen as vulnerable to online scams, Millenials and people in their early 20s were the most hacked last year, making up 2 in 5 of total victims.
There was good news for people in Scotland, as just 249 cybercrimes were reported north of the border, at an average loss of only £18, making it the least affected region.
FIVE WAYS TO PROTECT YOURSELF FROM CYBERCRIMINALS
1. Don’t interact with emails and texts from unknown senders
If you get a text or email from an unknown sender don’t open up any attachments or link as they may contain software that will steal your personal data.
2. Use two-factor authentication
You can do this on many sites, like Facebook, to make your account more secure, usually by sending a code to your phone.
3. Use strong and unique passwords for each account
Find a password that is not easily guessed. The best passwords include numbers, capital letters or special characters like ? or &
4. Keep software and apps up to date
Update your phone/computer often to get the latest security software
5. Contact the company directly
If you get a text or email that you are not sure about, contact the company or bank who you think sent it on their customer service line and ask them if it’s real.
If you have been a victim of cybercrime you can report it to Action Fraud online or on 03001232040
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