Student Interest

The Dangers of the Internet – Part 1

There are many dangers that lie in the internet these days, and there are many people who have been affected by these hazards. Schemes such as spamming, and technical support scamming have affected many people, and has in some cases worsened the lives of people all over the world. 

Spam/spamming is the use of messaging systems to send an unsolicited message, especially advertisements, as well as sending messages repeatedly on the same site. While the most widely recognized form of spam is email spam, the term is applied to similar abuses in other media, such as, instant messaging spam, Web search engine spam, mobile phone messaging spam, Internet forum spam, spam mobile apps, etc.

While harmless most of the time, spam can be used to spread computer viruses, trojan horses or other malicious software. The objective of spam may vary, some examples of dangerous spam involves: identity theft, and advance fee fraud. Some spammers attempt to capitalize on human greed, by giving false advertisements to make a person’s life “better”, but they just take advantage of them, while some spammers attempt to take advantage of the victims’ inexperience with computer technology to trick them, which is mainly used to trick kids who don’t know about the dangers of being online, and it is also used on the elderly who don’t know how the internet works, and they are outdated in the technology of today.

A technical support scam refers to any class of telephone fraud activities in which a scammer claims to offer a legitimate technical support service, often via cold calls to unsuspecting users. Such calls for example, when targeted at Microsoft Windows users, the caller will claim that they represent the technical support department at Microsoft.

Their most common attempts at these scams is through the use of fake pop-up ads, which they use to trick their victims into thinking their computer has been infected with malicious viruses. If the victim takes the bait they will, the scammer will then attempt to lure the victim into allowing them remote access to his or her computer. After remote access is gained, the scammer will rely on confidence tricks to make the victim believe that they do have software problems by taking control of their computer, the victim would then innocently purchase their so called “support services”. The scammer will often then steal the victim’s credit card account information or persuade the victim to log into his or her online banking account to receive a promised refund, claiming that a secure server is connected and that the scammer cannot see the details. Normally the elderly and other vulnerable parties, such as those with limited technical knowledge, are targeted for technical support scams.

Knowing this, everyone should be made fully aware about the dangers someone can encounter while navigating online. Kids, the elderly, and any other person who isn’t adept at technology nowadays can be an easy victim for anyone trying to take advantage of them, and those include the before mentioned spammers, and scammers.

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