October recognizes the importance of cybersecurity with National Cyber Security Awareness Month (SCSAM). In short, cybersecurity is protecting your computer-based equipment and information from unintended or unauthorized access, change, theft or destruction.
Cybercrime comes in many forms, such as online identity theft, financial fraud, hacking, email spoofing, information forgery and intellectual property crime. It can wreak havoc on victims’ lives and may even lead to financial ruin.
“In our hyper-connected world, it’s important for consumers to think before they click to be sure that they are landing on safe digital content and protecting themselves from cybersecurity threats that may be used to infect their devices or steal their identity,” said Gary Davis, chief consumer security evangelist at McAfee.
For the twelfth year in a row McAfee, “the device-to-cloud cybersecurity company,” researched famous individuals to reveal the top 10 most dangerous celebrities to search for online. The study highlights the dangers of clicking on suspicious links when searching for celebrity-focused content.
Celebrities in this years top 10 include reality stars, superheroes and the cast of the Netflix series, Orange is the New Black. Australian actress Ruby Rose was named the most dangerous celebrity to search for online according to McAfee’s Most Dangerous Celebrities study. Rose has had a career in modeling, as an MTV presenter, played as Stella Carlin in Orange is the New Black and was cast most recently as Batwoman for the CW.
The top 10 riskiest celebrities from this year’s study are:
- Ruby Rose
- Kristin Cavallari
- Marion Cotillard
- Lynda Carter
- Rose Byrne
- Debra Messing
- Kourtney Kardashian
- Amber Heard
- Kelly Ripa
- Brad William Henke
Cybercriminals use the allure of celebrities to trick unsuspecting consumers into visiting malicious websites that can be used to install malware or steal personal information and passwords.
BBB recommends taking these extra security measures to protect yourself against identity theft and other cyber crimes:
Keep a clean machine. Whether it’s a mobile device, tablet or laptop, make sure security software is current and up to date. Having the latest software on all devices can be one of the best defenses against viruses, malware, and other online threats.
Change passwords for all online accounts regularly. When changing your password, make it long, strong and unique, with a mix of upper and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols. By using different passwords on your accounts, you lessen the risk of multiple accounts being compromised.
Check your bank statement and credit report. Read your bank statements monthly and check your balance weekly to make sure no unauthorized transactions have been made to your account. At least once a year, get your credit report for free from each of the three credit bureaus at AnnualCreditReport.com.
Steer clear of suspicious texts, emails, and links. Unsolicited emails and pop-up ads can be full of computer viruses designed to steal usernames and passwords from your computer. Don’t give in to curiosity; close or delete the message.
Protect personal information. Shred all statements and applications you get in the mail that you don’t want to keep, including credit card applications, insurance forms, financial statements, and utility bills.
Connect with care. Use caution when logging in to public Wi-Fi networks and send personal information only to websites that are fully encrypted.
Report it. If your identity has been stolen or compromised, contact one of the three credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian or TransUnion) to report the crime. As soon as one the bureaus issue a fraud alert, the other two bureaus are automatically notified.