You can do your best to protect your information online. But if you happen to become a victim of cybercrime here are the steps you need to take.
Who to Contact
Local law enforcement: Report the crime as soon as it happens and fill out a formal report, so they have the crime on file. Some law enforcement offices have departments or detectives dedicated to fighting cybercrime.
The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3): IC3 will review and evaluate your filed cybercrime complaint and refer it to the appropriate law enforcement agency. Whether it be federal, state, local, or international law enforcement.
Federal Trade Commission (FTC): The FTC doesn’t solve individual cybercrime cases, but they operate Consumer Sentinel. A secure online database that is used by law enforcement agencies to detect patterns of cybercrime, leading to investigations and prosecutions. You can also receive additional information through the FTC hotline (1-877-IDTHEFT).
Local victim services provider: There are victim advocates in communities around the country that offer emotional and informational support following a crime.
Collect and Keep Evidence
You never know when you will be asked to provide evidence, so it is important to keep any that relates to your cybercrime. Keep the evidence in a safe and secure location that you can access if you need to provide the evidence for a prosecution. Some items that may be evidence can include but not limited to the following:
- Canceled checks
- Certifies or other mail receips
- Chatroom or newsgroup text
- Credit card receipts
- Envelopes (if you received items via a delivery service)
- Log files with dates and times
- Social media messages
- Money order receipts
- Pamphlets or brochures
- Phone bills
- Printed or electronic copies of emails
- Printed or electronic copies of web pages
- Wire receipts