River of Light Countdown:

Open search Close search

Close menu


Beat the hackers by securing your online accounts this Safer Internet Day

2 years ago

By The Guide Liverpool

Beat the hackers by securing your online accounts this Safer Internet Day

Merseyside Police is urging internet users to set up strong passwords to beat the hackers this Safer Internet Day 2022.

As part of the Safer Internet Centre’s national day, the team is encouraging everyone to make sure they have secure passwords and use two factor authentication where possible to help protect email, social media and other accounts.

Every year, Safer Internet Day works to promote the safe, responsible and respectful use of technology to help protect internet users from fraud, theft, abuse and exploitation.

This year’s theme will celebrate young people’s role in creating a safer internet: ‘All fun and games? Exploring respect and relationships online.’

Young people use online platforms, such as social media, video streaming and video games, to connect and collaborate, and this year young people are being challenged to foster supportive relationships and respectful online communities, while being equipped with the skills they need to keep themselves and others safe.

This includes ensuring their online accounts, such as Instagram, Snapchat and Twitch, are secure.

Criminals can use hacked accounts to extort money from users, as well as purchasing goods online, and victims can be left both out of pocket and in a huge amount of distress.

Officers from the force’s Cyber team have encouraged schools across Merseyside to participate, and have provided materials for them to educate young people, as well as providing signposting for parents and teachers. Officers are also delivering an event at the University of Liverpool to help students protect themselves online.

Detective Inspector John Black from Merseyside Police Cyber Unit said:

“People of all ages are increasingly using the internet to interact with each other, and during a period of lockdown when our ability to meet in person has been severely restricted, this has been more useful than ever.

“But with this increased use comes the increased threat of those who are prepared to ruthlessly exploit people online for their own financial gain.

“We have investigated a number of incidents of fraud online where offenders have used sophisticated technology to ‘guess’ passwords, and in many cases the victim had used the same password for multiple accounts, and would be exposed to greater risk as a result.

“Those offenders can then access those accounts to purchase goods or in some cases, to find information and images they then use to extort money.

“We work with other law enforcement agencies to identify offenders and bring them to justice, but the best way you can protect yourself is to ensure you use different and difficult to guess passwords for different online accounts, or better still use two-factor authentication.

“There are a range of password managers available, enabling you to securely store those difficult to remember passwords for different accounts so that the device you are using can make the process both simpler and safer. It is also recommended that you use three words that are easy to remember for you, but which would be difficult for a stranger to guess.

“Two factor authentication (2FA), or two step verification, requires two pieces of evidence that you are who you say you are, such as a mobile number as well as an email address and password, which makes life even more difficult for scammers.

“More and more online services already have 2FA switched on but most do not. If available, the option to turn on 2FA is usually found in the security settings of your account – such as email, social media or cloud storage.”

For more information on setting up secure passwords, 2FA and more, visit: the website here.

Officers have also been working with businesses and high street banks, looking at the type of online fraud that are happening at the moment.

This includes phishing, where an email or message appears to be from a trusted sender but is in fact from a scammer.

Det Insp John Black explained:

“We are seeing incidents where fraudsters are accessing people’s social media and asking friends for money – our advice is simple, never give money to someone or a business over the internet without checking it is a legitimate request first.

“In some cases fraudsters may use the profile picture of a friend or family member, and attempt to add you as a friend or send you a message. If you receive a friend request from someone you know to be your friend already, or a message which look suspicious, do not accept or reply. Instead, please make that friend aware and report the incident to the social media company.

“It is really important that we all become more aware of the possible risk of exploitation of our children and ourselves online, particularly via social media sites and how to report suspicious activity to the police.”

Advice and guidance for children, young people and adults to help them stay safe online is available at:


If you believe you or your child is a victim contact us on Twitter at @MerPolCC, on Facebook at Merseyside Police Contact Centre. Alternatively contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. 


The Guide Liverpool

About Us

We showcase the very best of Liverpool City Region through stunning video features and keep residents and visitors updated on what's on and what's good. About Us

The Guide Liverpool

Meet Our Team 👋

Meet Our Team
Eurovision 2023 - Jay And Gem - The Guide Liverpool Video Production

The Guide Liverpool

Video Production & Advertising

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse quis eros sit amet mi eleifend tincidunt. Services