October is Cyber Security Awareness Month

By | October 8, 2016

The following article is reprinted from the Michigan State Police October, 2016 Bulletin:

Cyber

In recognition of October as Cyber Security Awareness Month, the MSP encourages Michiganders to be vigilant about their cyber security practices and to learn how to keep their personal information safe on the web.

According to the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center, Michigan residents and businesses have lost more than $26.5 million to cybercriminal activities so far this year, with an average victim loss of nearly $4,000.

Cybercrimes are committed each day through “phishing” emails that appear to come from trusted sources, infected websites that unknowingly capture personal information when visited and as persuasive links that lock files until a ransom is paid.

Follow these cyber safety tips to reduce your chances of becoming a victim of a cybercrime:

  • Set all social media accounts from “public” to “private,” so that only those you trust can view your profile.
  • Be cautious of connecting to public Wi-Fi, as unsecured and unencrypted networks can put your data in the hands of a potential hacker.
  • Create unique passwords for each online activity. Use strong passwords that contain a combination of letters, numbers and special characters (e.g. ! @#$&*).
  • Do not open, reply or click on links or attachments in an unsolicited email.
  • When shopping online, regularly check your bank and credit card statements to ensure nothing is out of the ordinary.

To ensure the safety of Michiganders, the Michigan Cyber Command Center (MC3) serves as the single-point of contact to investigate and prosecute Michigan’s cybercrimes through partnerships and information sharing with government agencies and businesses. The MC3 is also responsible for the coordination and combined efforts of cyber emergency response during critical cyber incidents in Michigan.

If you feel you are a victim of a cybercrime, contact the MC3 at 1-877-642-9237.

For more Cybercrime safety tips, visit www.michigan.gov/cybersecurity.