Cybercrime spells bad news for business owners, who manage plenty of sensitive information electronically.

A cybercrime is any crime in which a computer or other electronic device is either the object of the crime or is used as a tool to commit the crime via the internet or some other computer network.

To help you understand what to look out for, we’ve outlined a primer of five common cyber crimes and how they happen.
  1. Phishing – usually an email from what looks like a reputable or known source asking for an “update” on passwords, account numbers, Social Security numbers, etc.
  2. Hacking – breaking codes and passwords to gain unauthorized access to computer systems or networks.
  3. Spamming – sending junk/unsolicited email. Often the “attachment” or “offer,” once opened by the recipient unleashes a harmful virus or malware.
  4. Spoofing – makes an email appear to have originated from someone other than the bad guy.
  5. Cyber ransom/extortion – malicious software specifically designed to take control of a computer system and/or portions of its data and hold the information hostage until the bad guys receive payment from the victim to unlock or restore access to the needed information.

You may not even realize how much information you store. Being aware of these types of crimes is the first step to keeping your information secure.


Jane Rheinheimer is the principal of Rheinheimer + Smigliani, APC. Jane’s practice focuses on the defense of employment and ADA litigation, wage and hour issues, and professional liability with an emphasis on California Realtors®. For a free consultation regarding your cybercrime concerns, contact us at 619.503.1437. 

*This blog post does not constitute legal advice. It is intended for general informational purposes and does not create an attorney-client relationship. Contact an attorney directly for legal advice.

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