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Smartphones, Social Networking are Prime Targets for Cyber Criminals

McAfee, one of the leaders in the computer protection industry, says that cyber criminals are more likely to target smartphones and social networking websites in the near future. The reason is simple – these new technologies are being used more often by consumers and lack the same safeguards as older technologies.

Part of the susceptibility to cyber criminality is the lack of public awareness. Most email users know to never open a suspicious-looking message, but Twitter users often click on links without a second thought as to where that link came from.

Facebook users use geolocation services like Foursquare to tell everyone their current location without thinking about who, outside their circle of friends, may also be viewing this information.

This doesn’t mean you need to stop using your smartphone or social networking websites. These technologies are perfectly safe so long as you use common sense. For example, seniors (and everyone else) should only click on links and emails from known sources.

Social network posts should never contain information that can be used against you. That means never broadcasting that you’re going on a  week-long vacation, which lets everyone know your home will be vacant. A little common sense and forethought may be your best crime deterrent.

To learn more about cyber criminals, click on our stories about the 12 most common Christmas cyber scams or seven common Internet crimes to watch out for.

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