Cyberwar! Cyber attack!

These alert words are now part of our daily lives as the press loves to blast them across the headlines. It’s all about the present day dangers of computer technology and it goes back to the earlier internet scams that appeared on the web. Let’s take a look at the fundamentals of what those scams were and how they apply to today.

There are five or so major categories of internet scams that arose on the web and believe it or not they’re the same categories that were once pervasive in the offline world. That’s right, what worked in the offline world for decades was translated to the digital world for the most part.

As people logged on to services like AOL and Compuserve most mainstream criminals had no clue what to do. Only Geeks had the power to run some scams at first and most of them abhorred them and luckily built defenses. This led to people asking for money. The lonely girl scam. It always works because so many men are saps who will fall for a pretty face and sob story. What guys didn’t know at the time was that these so called women were fake. It was a choice scam for the neophyte and pro. Suckers shelled out millions to geeks who needed cash for more equipment. Nowdays, this kind of scam is global and spreads no matter what safeguards are in place.

Next came more technical scams or exploits. Hackers realized the vulnerabilities of the users but still needed the user to drop their guard. Files, websites all rigged to cause havoc and gather information. Such internet scams as impersonating charities and churches and asking the surfer to download a file or go to a site and then wham, they’re done. The same thing goes on today to the tune of 100s of billions of dollars lost to crime.

So let’s recap here. The earliest internet scams depended on user vulnerabilities. Gullibility is a typical and unavoidable human state of mind. No matter how much security warned, things got worse. So we have user vulnerability, technical attacks, and the worse is yet to come.

Trust. In the 2000s It took a while for the traditional scams in the offline world like real estate and banking to catch up to the internet scams. There are now cottage industries of get rich quick internet scams, real estate, weight loss, and other areas where people seek improvement. These areas are shark feeds and there’s nothing the law can do to stop them as they are so numerous. So we have institutionalized scams which don’t always work and now and then a big fish gets caught but that’s not enough. More law

A full bodied parakeet barked


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