Stay smart online to protect yourself

Defend against cyber scammers by staying smart online

BEWARE: In 2017, more than 6.09 million adult Australians were impacted by cybercrime.

BEWARE: In 2017, more than 6.09 million adult Australians were impacted by cybercrime.


How to reverse the threat of cybercrime.


IF YOU think you know how to protect yourself online – don’t be so sure.

Last year alone one in four Australians, or more than 6 million people, were hit by cybercrime.

But taking simple actions can help to defend against cybercrime and reverse the threat.

“Fake emails and texts that try to get you to provide your personal information, fake shopping websites, and fake invoices sent to Australian businesses are just some of the ways that cybercriminals are targeting Australians,’ said Alastair MacGibbon, Head of the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC).

“Australians are receiving thousands of emails every day from cybercriminals who try to trick us into providing our credit card details, bank account logins, account passwords and personal information to gain money. It’s time to get smarter online.

“Cybercrime is planned. Cybercriminals use psychology to take advantage of us – like our desire to find love, make money, grab a bargain or be compliant. You can fight back by using our tips, tools and techniques.”

Stay safe

ACSC’s Stay Smart Online Week (October 8 – 14) is highlighting how we can better protect ourselves, our family and our businesses when online.

This year’s campaign focuses on four key areas:

  • Passwords: Passwords are the lock on the front door to our online lives. Make sure you have strong passwords and use a second layer of authentication, like an SMS code or a fingerprint.
  • Phishing: We all need to closely check emails asking for personal details, or verification of our passwords or bank details — whether we are at home or at work. Fake emails are getting increasingly sophisticated. Contact the vendor or organisation independently to check its authenticity.
  • Updates: When you get a reminder to update the software on your computer, phone or apps, you should do it promptly. Better still, set it to auto-update. It will help you protect your information and identity.
  • Public WiFi: It is possible for others to see what you are doing over public Wi-Fi networks, so be wary - don't do online banking or online shopping or send sensitive information.

More tools and tips: