The Singapore Police Force recently issued a warning about the increase of online extortion attempts by female foreigners. Internet sirens have been wooing men into performing sexual acts over a web cam, recording it and then threatening to circulate the video online. To safeguard yourself against a very public and embarrassing one-hand monologue and other cyber crimes like identity theft and credit card misuse, here are five ways to up your online security.
1. Make your passwords at least eight letters long, and substitute a few alphabet letters for symbols. eg S1ng4p*re.
2. Remove your mobile number and date of birth from social networking sites like LinkedIn and Facebook.
3. If you receive an SMS containing a weblink from what looks to be a credible source (your bank, social networking, betting or music account). Don’t access if from your smartphone. Log into the account from a computer with good internet security and check your messages from there.
4. If an amazing offer, prize notification or tax rebate sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Never give out personal details like your date of birth or bank account information without double-checking the source.
5. Be vigilant for malware, these are often downloaded by clicking on a link spammed to you from a friend’s hacked email account. The malware can record keystrokes and send personal passwords and details over the internet exposing you to cyber theft. Macs need virus protection too.
TOP TIP: From the Singapore Police Force:
“Do not accede to any request that may put you in vulnerable positions, such as performing compromising acts in front of the webcam, or giving personal details about yourself when interacting with other internet users.”