The rise of the internet has completely changed the way we live. High-speed internet has ushered in an age of information unparalleled by any other time in human history. Commercial internet applications and rapid information transmissions have enabled us to make better decisions, get things done faster and made the world so much more efficient. With more data available than ever before, we’re living so much better than we could before—connectivity with global markets, a greater range of goods and services have improved the global economy beyond all expectations. Let’s discuss The Rising Tide of Cybercrime: Novel Threats To The Financial Libertarian.
Despite these advantages of the internet, there’s an entire set of novel threats to your financial agency. Online banking services, Fintech, social media and e-Commerce are great, but the threat from cybercrime is even greater. The more we immerse ourselves into a world that runs on the internet, the more likely it is that we’ll be targeted for coercion in the online sphere. Accenture points out a 67% increase in the incidence and 72% increase in the cost of cybercrime in the past 5 years. Comparatively, the increase in the number of internet users has only increased by 16.5%. The outrageous growth of cybercrime in relation to the number of internet users raises some very important questions about the sanctity of individual liberty.
The Relation Between Human Freedom And The Internet
To put it crudely, the internet is one of the fastest and the largest collection of data ever created. The widespread use of the internet only points out that our lives are being driven by more information than ever. You can get the latest news within seconds, make purchases equally as fast and nearly all the population of the internet uses social media as well. There are easily noticeable overlaps between our use of the internet and our lives in the physical universe. The information we see online evidently affects our actions outside of the internet as well.
All human actions are ultimately determined by the information we receive. Our decisions are dependent on our beliefs about the world, which are now being fed by the internet and the vast collection of information on our hands. This essentially means that the internet, in a certain sense, dictates our lives. Much of this is true, considering modern-day internet marketing practices that are used to induce demand and effectively dictate consumer decision making. There’s no escaping it; the internet plays an integral part in helping us form worldview—based on which we make everyday life decisions.
Whether this information limits our actions or improves our potential freedom depends on what sort of information we’re receiving. In light of recent events, like the recent Cambridge Analytica controversy during the previous US elections, there’s reason to believe that the internet is being used to manipulate our belief systems. When information is fed to the masses for political or economically mediated purposes, no one can really say that knowledge empowers the individual. There are forces in play that are subtly coercing us into forming belief systems that play into their hands.
The Economic Impact Of Cyber Crime
Ever since Edward Snowden highlighted the ways in which the US government was monitoring certain individuals and using the internet to spy on their own populace, more instances of cybercrime are coming to light. Personally, I think Snowden did a great job telling us the insidious ways the state uses to restrict individual freedom. All that set aside though, statistics indicate that the cost of cyber attacks to an organization has gotten higher from $1 million in 2018 to $13 million per organization in 2019. This is a startling and a rather scary increase in the incidence of cybercrime for more than just financial loss.
While the institution is targeted for the information it possesses, the information is yours. You shared it with the organization in exchange for something like access to phone applications or their services. Cyber attacks leach information from organizations to be used for whatever malicious purposes a hacker intends.
While the threat of cybercrime looms over all of our heads, there are organizations that will collect the information and sell it for profits. Plenty of websites and services providers use convoluted legality to trick people into divulging their secrets and personal information which it bundles and sells to the highest bidder.
These instances of data breach through coercion, misdirection and straight out hacking are all giving insights about your life to someone who will use it to your detriment. Clearly, now more than ever, we need to take steps to make sure we’re safe while we’re surfing the internet. I’ve already written a blog about how to protect yourself from cybercrime and data leaks through phones, this article will discuss how to protect your computers.
Staying Safe On The Internet
It takes very little effort to protect yourself from undue harm from the use of the internet. It has more to do with adopting these safe surfing habits so no one monitors you, gets access to personal data and doesn’t use that information to harm you in any way.
1. Use Password Protected Wi-Fi
Just as you use the Wi-Fi and the router to access the internet, a hacker can use it to gain access to your computers. Rogue routers are one of the most frequently targeted pieces of hardware which lead to a full-scale data breach. You should only use password-protected Wi-Fi routers to eliminate the risk of a data breach through the router.
2. Always Use A VPN
Virtual Private Networks (VPN) redirects your I.P addresses and masks them so they can’t be detected. VPNs effectively shield you from any interaction with someone who wants to gain access to your internet activity, by encrypting all the data sent through it. Using VPNs will keep your data completely safe from any intrusions.
If you’re looking for a great VPN service, you should get in touch with my associates at Express VPN. These guys are the best VPN services in the world right now.
3. Add Password Protection Wherever Needed
3. Add Password Protection Wherever Needed
Adding authentication protocols to your computers and to your data will reduce the risk of successful cyber attacks against you. The hacker simply won’t be able to access your computer, your files or any other data because he doesn’t have the passcodes to access those files. Just don’t ever hand out your passwords to anyone, because phishing scams are just about the only way any cybercriminal might get your passwords.
Cyber safety is the need of the hour in a time when the internet dominates our everyday lives. Taking the appropriate measures to protect yourself doesn’t take a lot of time, and you’ll probably thank yourself for taking these steps when someone around you gets scammed.
I hope you enjoyed reading The Rising Tide of Cybercrime: Novel Threats To The Financial Libertarian.
As I mentioned earlier, using a VPN is probably the first line of defence. My family uses ExpressVPN. They really are the best VPN service available.
About The Author
Mikkel Thorup is the host of The Expat Money Show podcast and Director of Content at Escape Artist. He is also the author of #1 Best-Selling book Expat Secrets on Amazon. He has spent nearly 20 years in continual travel around the world, visiting more than 100 countries including Colombia, North Korea, Zimbabwe, and Iran. His goal is to help people just like you to generate additional streams of income, eliminate your tax bill, and take advantage of offshore structures so you can travel the world freely and never have to worry about money again. For more information on his legal (but creative) tax strategies for Expats watch this free video.
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