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Common Cybercrime Complaints

Cybercrime can take many forms. It is an expanding criminal activity, with new methods developing every day. Listed below are some of the more common complaints affecting computer and technology users today. Each complaint topic includes a brief description, and a link to a more detailed explanation of that topic.


Cyberbullying (also called “cyberstalking”) is the use of a computer, email, phone, tablet, or other electronic communication devices to harass or cause undue emotional stress to another person. For a more detailed explanation, please refer to our Cyberbullying page at SecureFlorida.org.

Internet Fraud

The Internet provides an easy medium for criminals to obtain money by deceiving people. Examples of Internet fraud include online auction and retail schemes using popular sites such as eBay.com or Facebook Marketplace. Criminals have even been known to send out mass emails pretending to come from a professional hitman who is hired to kill the recipient, but are really scams trying to scare individuals into paying out huge sums of money. The tactics used in these Internet frauds and scams change constantly. For more information on Internet frauds and scams, please visit our Email Practices page at SecureFlorida.org.


Phishing is an email scam in which the criminal sends a legitimate-looking email in an attempt to gather personally identifiable information from recipients. The message appears to come from a well-known, legitimate website, such as PayPal or Bank of America, and will state that there is something wrong with the recipient's account information. The email will provide a link for the recipient to click on which takes the recipient to a counterfeit website made to look exactly like the legitimate one. The recipient is then asked to enter personally identifiable information. For more detailed information on phishing scams, please refer to our Phishing page on SecureFlorida.org. You can report phishing emails to the Anti-Phishing Working Group. If you are the victim of a phishing scam, please follow the steps outlined by the Anti-Phishing Working Group.


Identity Theft

Criminals can get the information they need to assume your identity from a variety of sources, such as the theft of your wallet or purse, your trash, the Internet, or from credit card or bank information. They may even approach you directly in person, by telephone, or in an Internet chat room and ask you for the information. To learn more about Identity Theft and ways you can help lessen the risks involved, please see our Identity Theft page at SecureFlorida.org.


Malicious software, or "malware" (including viruses, worms, and Trojan Horses), has become an increasing threat to both business and home users. Malware is used as a tool by hackers to remotely access computers as well as corrupt or destroy important data. For more information on the most common types of malware, please visit our Risks page on SecureFlorida.org.


Spyware refers to any computer technology that gathers information about a person or organization without their knowledge or consent. Most commonly, it is put on a computer to secretly collect information about the user that is then sent to advertisers and other interested parties. More detailed information about this topic can be found on our Spyware page at SecureFlorida.org.


Spam is simply unsolicited bulk email. Unsolicited means that the recipient did not grant permission for the message to be sent, and bulk means that the message was sent as part of a larger collection of messages. Spam remains a problem because advertisers have no operating costs, and it is often difficult to hold senders of spam accountable for their unsolicited mass mailings. For more information about spam email, please see our Spam page at SecureFlorida.org.

Internet Hoaxes

Hoaxes are either deliberate or unintentional email messages warning people about a phony virus, or otherwise trying to deceive the email recipient. Some hoaxes create as much trouble as viruses by causing massive amounts of unnecessary email, but most are simply annoying. Please visit our Internet Hoaxes page at SecureFlorida.org for more information.

Florida Department of Law Enforcement Priorities

FDLE is composed of five areas: Executive Direction and Business Support, Criminal Investigations and Forensic Science, Criminal Justice Information, Criminal Justice Professionalism and Florida Capitol Police. FDLE’s duties, responsibilities and procedures are mandated through Chapter 943, FS, and Chapter 11, FAC. To learn more about these areas, read our Statement of Agency Organization and Operation or visit our Open Government page.