In Patricia Highsmith’s 1955 novel “The Proficient Mr. Ripley,” a con man who convinces the elites that he is a Princeton graduate goes on to dupe his manner into excessive society and spend lavishly at high-end shops by forgery and different unscrupulous strategies.

Had Tom Ripley been alive at this time he’d seemingly be hacking his technique to wealth and creating his bogus backstory of success on social media websites.

More and more, criminals are following the cash that flows on-line. Phishing, pretend software program and procuring websites and tech help scams enable entry to private data and bank cards. The federal authorities and South Florida legislation enforcement say that untold billions at the moment are stolen from victims within the U.S. and overseas every year — a quantity that’s solely rising.

These hackers are the great guys. Miami-Dade’s new cyber cops hunt high-tech crooks

One of the best ways to keep away from getting ripped off, say legislation enforcement specialists and web sleuths, is to abide by a late twentieth century proverb that also very a lot applies at this time: If one thing sounds too good to be true, it in all probability is.

“You might have an anonymity issue, in order that they take extra possibilities,” stated South Florida Cyber Crimes Commander George Perera, a serious with the Miami-Dade Police Division. “A lot of the web is unregulated. Now you will have crypto and it is unregulated, too. It is like a Class 6 situation.”

Listed below are some recommendations by and the Federal Commerce Fee on tips on how to navigate the web safely:

Keep away from utilizing the identical passwords on a number of accounts and ensure these passwords are unpredictable.

Do not give private info to unencrypted web sites. Encrypted websites start with https.

Preserve your pc software program up to date and discuss to your youngsters about attainable pitfalls.

To keep away from cryptocurrency ripoffs:

By no means pay upfront and needless to say cryptocurrency funds, in contrast to credit score and debit playing cards, don’t include authorized protections.

All the time analysis the vendor, holding a selected eye out for civil lawsuits.

By no means combine on-line courting and funding recommendation.

And if somebody calls you out of the blue with guarantees of big returns, however provided that you purchase cryptocurrency and switch it to their on-line account, steer clear.

Lastly, in case you consider you have been scammed, do not hesitate to contact the South Florida Cyber Crimes Job Power at Miami-Dade Police, or use the non-emergency quantity, 305-4-POLICE (305-476-5423) and ask for the cyber crimes unit. Or contact the FTC or

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