If you have been the victim of a ransomware scam, or fake tech support scam, or other computer incident, intrusion, or breach, you may be wondering if you should report it to the police.
If you report your crime to the police, it is unlikely that it is going to be solved and the perpetrator arrested. Many local police departments have a computer fraud officer or even a larger group, but there may be little they can do for you. The problem is that the amounts lost are usually low, and the perpetrator is usually operating outside of your local jurisdiction. They are probably operating in a different country.
The first thing you should know is that once in the hands of the police, your case will be out of your control, and could move in directions that you hadn’t considered. If you are a business owner, you may want to call your attorney for advice on this one.
The interesting thing is that while one crime may not be enough, several hundred or thousands of instances of the same crime can become a big enough criminal activity to interest the likes of the FBI and EuroPol. To that end, the FBI has a web site called the Internet Crime Complaint Center or IC3.
The FBI is very interested in collecting all the data they can on Internet and computer crime. Often they are able to build big international cases that culminate with the arrest of the foreign perpetrators, and their subsequent extradition to the United States. Once in the U.S., they are prosecuted and incarcerated. I have noticed a definite improvement in the ability of law enforcement when it comes to brings these cases to trial.
So my recommendation is that you should report these crimes to the police, and most certainly to the IC3 website.
About the Author:I am a cybersecurity and IT instructor, cybersecurity analyst, pen-tester, trainer, and speaker. I am an owner of the WyzCo Group Inc. In addition to consulting on security products and services, I also conduct security audits, compliance audits, vulnerability assessments and penetration tests. I also teach Cybersecurity Awareness Training classes. I work as an information technology and cybersecurity instructor for several training and certification organizations. I have worked in corporate, military, government, and workforce development training environments I am a frequent speaker at professional conferences such as the Minnesota Bloggers Conference, Secure360 Security Conference in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, the (ISC)2 World Congress 2016, and the ISSA International Conference 2017, and many local community organizations, including Chambers of Commerce, SCORE, and several school districts. I have been blogging on cybersecurity since 2006 at http://wyzguyscybersecurity.com