Website pop-up scams hit nearly two million Brits a year as internet fraud rockets
00:01, 13 May 2016
By Ruki Sayid
Cyber crooks ripped off a total of 6.6million Brits in 2015 – and many of us are clueless about preventing attacks
Trinity Mirror Internet scam
Too many of us are falling victim to internet scams
Rogue web “pop-ups” scam nearly two million computer users a year, a study shows.
They are the most effective attack as people often click “OK” or “Cancel” in the belief the buttons are safe.
Online rackets have doubled in three years, with 6.6 million victims in 2015, Privilege Insurance found.
Simon Dukes, chief executive of Cifas, the UK’s Fraud Prevention Service said: “Without doubt, the speed in which the internet has penetrated almost every layer of our lives has meant fraudsters are finding it easier than ever to get the personal details they need.
“Falling victim can be traumatic, it can take months before the fraudster’s actions are discovered, and in some cases just as long to sort out the mess left behind. The money lost to fraudsters also leads to increased cost of services, interest rates and premiums for genuine customers.
“The good news is that there are simple steps we can all take to keep our personal information safe.”
Apple Phishers target Apple customers to steal their ID credentials
Phishers have recently targeted Apple customers to steal their ID credentials
Experts say to close dodgy pop-ups by right-clicking them in the task bar or dock.
The study revealed that online scams have rocketed in the past three years.
One in five adults have unwittingly downloaded a dodgy document by opening an important sounding attachment on an email and one in ten have had their email account hacked.
Read more: Police warn ‘Do not open this email’ after thousands fall victim to scam
But despite the growing dangers of online cons, more than 29 million Brits use the same passwords for all their accounts, making it easier for fraudsters to unlock personal details.
A fifth of computer and laptop owners do not have the latest anti-virus software to protect their sensitive data.
And more than half of parents do not know how to set up parental controls to prevent children stumbling across X-rated sites and inappropriate content.
Tips for staying safe online include installing the latest anti-virus software, having different and complex passwords and never parting with PIN numbers as no legitimate organisation would ask for them to be disclosed.
Ten most common ways to get caught out
- Receiving inappropriate pop-ups
- Downloading a virus by clicking on an attachment
- Stumbling across inappropriate content when browsing
- Downloading software with a virus
- Opening a phishing email
- Email account being hacked
- Visiting a fraudulent website
- Online accounts being hacked
- Visiting a website that’s a copy of a real one
- Email account being taken over