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East Boro Backs Anti-Cyber Crime Campaign

A DORSET housing association has urged its tenants to stay vigilant to avoid becoming a victim of cyber crime.

East Boro, which specialises in housing and support services for the sheltered elderly, adults with learning disabilities and other vulnerable client groups in social housing need, is backing a £4m Government campaign aimed at tackling Internet abuse.

Cyber Streetwise encourages people to take safety precautions while shopping, banking or socialising online.

The campaign, which includes a new website and online videos, has been welcomed by East Boro housing manager, who said the organisation will be sending out advice to all its customers.

“East Boro welcomes the initiative”, he explained, “and it’s something we will be supporting in every way.  Cyber-crime is growing and we are all at risk of becoming victims.

“This is the message will passing on to our tenants and customers throughout Dorset and we will sign posting them to the Cyber Street website where they can pick up lots are very helpful information.

“People need to be better informed against the risks of using their computer or smartphone and we will be urging all our tenants and customers to take note of the advice being given.”

The launch of the campaign is part of the National Cyber Security Programme and comes at a time as an increasing number of people use the web on laptops, tablets and smartphones. Findings from the government’s most recent National Cyber Security Consumer Tracker suggest more than half the population are not taking simple actions to protect themselves online.

While 94 per cent of people believe it is their personal responsibility to ensure a safe internet experience, the research highlights:

  • only 44 per cent always install internet security software on new equipment
  • only 37 per cent download updates and patches for personal computers when prompted – falling even further to a fifth (21 per cent) for smartphones and mobile devices
  • less than a third (30 per cent) habitually use complex passwords to protect online accounts
  • 57 per cent do not always check websites are secure before making a purchase

Mr Sparks added: “In this day and age almost everyone has access to the net through computers, phones and even games consuls and the figures released certainly make you stop and think.

“Ensuring our customers’ safety is a priority for East Boro, particularly as we provide services for many vulnerable client groups all over Dorset.

“It’s vital that every precaution is taken when using the Internet, be it financial transitions, social media and other forms of communication, and that’s what we will inform our customers through our newsletters and other communication resources.”

There are five steps people can take to protect themselves and others from cyber crime:

  1. Use strong, memorable passwords
  2. Install anti-virus software on new devices
  3. Check privacy settings on social media
  4. Shop safely online – always check online retail sites are secure
  5. Download software and application patches when prompted.​

Date Posted: Wednesday 28th May 2014 @ 13:00