Cumbria Police offer advice about staying safe online

Cumbria Police are advising people to think before they post to social media, as part of a week-long cybercrime campaign. There have been 152 reported crimes relating to Twitter and Facebook since 2011.

Cumbria Police issue advice against online fraud

Cumbria Police are advising people to take simple steps to help prevent online fraud, as part of their week-long cybercrime campaign.

“The internet is a definitely a key target for fraudsters due to the sheer amount of personal and financial information people now provide online.

"The internet has made shopping, banking and communicating easier than ever – but there is a dark side to the internet.

“One area of online fraud we have seen an increase in is whereoffenders target vulnerable, often elderly, people through dating websites.

"One typical scam involves women being contacted by people pretending to be from the armed forces abroad, who ask for money.

"We have seen people lose thousands of pounds through these scams."

– Detective Superintendent Andy Slattery

Below are some steps to help keep you safe online:

  • Do not give out any personal information before verifying the credentials of who is asking.
  • Beware of phishing emails. Remember that banks and financial institutions will not ask you to click on a link in an email and confirm your bank details.
  • Make sure your computer has up-to-date anti-virus software and a firewall installed.
  • Sign-up to ‘Verified by Visa’ or ‘MasterCard Secure Code’ whenever you are given the option online.
  • Be very wary of emails offering you business deals out of the blue – if an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is.

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Cumbria Police's tips for staying safe on social media

Cumbria Police are running a week long campaign against cyber bullying.

Some important questions that people can ask to keep themselves safewhile social networking are:

  • Who is your audience going to be?
  • Do you really know all your “friends”? - If not then consider your posts as being public.
  • Are your privacy settings locked down enough?
  • Do you understand who will be able to view your posts and profile?
  • Will strangers be learning more about your personal life that you would want them to?
  • Are you creating a security risk by tagging yourself in a location or posting pictures of your home or property?
  • Am I happy for this post to be recorded permanently? – Even when a post is removed from a site, copies of it may have been recorded and may be re-posted at any time.
  • Is my post acceptable or could it be interpreted as harassment, bullying or discriminatory in any way by another person?

For more information about staying safe online click here ).

Police urge Cumbrians to use social media safely

CumbriaPolice are advising people to think before they post to social media, as part of a week-long cybercrime campaign.

There have been 152 reported crimes relating to Twitter and Facebook since 2011.

Although social media can be a positive part of everyday life for many unfortunately people can use social media to harass, threaten and victimise other users.

“Social networking is a great resource, and now a common way to keep in touch with a large group of people. However it is sadly also rapidly becoming a target for would-be criminals.

“Some applications have unforeseen risks such as cyclists using GPS tracking to log and share their training rides, which inadvertently discloses the whereabouts of high value bicycles unless privacy settings are applied prudently.

“There are some simple steps people can take to protect themselves, including checking security settings, and being careful with what you post.

“Whilst social media allows us to share our views and opinions there are limits to what is acceptable and what could be construed as unlawful.

"Users should think before posting and ask themselves whether their post could be construed as bullying, racist, homophobic or offensive in any other way.

"Even if a post is meant to be humorous or light hearted it may be viewed by others who are offended or intimidated by it. If in doubt – don’t post it."

– Detective Superintendent Andrew Slattery