Programs that help individuals, organizations and the general public protect themselves against situations in which their access to the Internet or use of a mobile phone or other telecommunications device has made them vulnerable to a crime in which their computer or cell phone is the object of a crime (hacking, phishing, spamming) or is being used by another as a tool to commit a crime. Security measures include use of strong passwords; activating the computer's firewall; installing and updating anti-virus/malware and spyware detection software; avoiding unsolicited emails and text messages that look suspicious or have been sent by a stranger; avoiding public Wi-Fi; protecting personal information on social media; restricting physical access to sensitive information by shutting down computers when they aren't being used; locking mobile devices; and encrypting confidential data to keep it secure. Regularly reviewing bank and credit card statements to quickly catch identity theft and online crimes can help reduce the impact if it has occurred.
Programs that provide a hotline or other mechanisms that people can use to anonymously report cases in which computers, laptops, tablets, mobile phones or other personal devices have been or are being used to commit a crime such as distribution of child pornography; cyberstalking or harassment; unauthorized interception of communications; intellectual property violations; or illegally accessing other computer systems to alter, destroy or steal data; intercept and disclose confidential information; plant spyware, ransomware or other forms of malware; launch denial of service attacks; or engage in phishing or smshing, financial theft or other activities that are illegal.
The above terms and definitions are part of the Taxonomy of Human Services, used here by permission of INFO LINE of Los Angeles.