This is how online criminals work

Online criminals are always trying to get a hold of different kinds of information, often usernames and passwords, bank and credit card information. They are experts in manipulation techniques and work to gain their victims’ trust. They rapidly change their methods, making it difficult to uncover such attempts.

For you to be better prepared, it is important to understand what methods and tools the criminals use:

  • They use emails, text messages, phone calls and other communication channels.
  • It’s easy to forge email addresses or phone numbers.
  • It’s easy to forge webpages.
  • They prey on emotions: fear, urgency, wish for quick gain or other advantages.
  • They contextualise the communication in ways that are familiar to the victim, for example by sending a message about a parcel that is on its way.

To gain your trust

The criminals try to create messages that seem real and convincing. How do they do this?

They often base their messages on familiar situations, where it is natural that one receives a message. One of these situations might be information about a parcel being shipped.

There are many people who are receiving parcels at home. As large parcel transporters, the logos of Posten and Bring are often misused. As more people are shopping online, more and more are in a situation where they are waiting for a parcel. This increases the probability for criminals to succeed.

They use your digital tracks

When we use the internet, we leave behind digital tracks in the form of information. Criminals use these tracks to make their messages more credible. Here are some examples:

  • Your email address and full name.
  • What you work with.
  • What kind of IT solution or system you use.
  • Who your internet provider is and which services you subscribe to.
  • Your internet search history.

There are also examples where the receiver’s password has been included in scam and phishing emails. Criminals may get a hold of these passwords through previous attacks on legitimate websites, where usernames and passwords have been compromised.

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