Cyber Expert Warns of Hidden Criminal Communication Online
MCALLEN – Terrorists and thieves are getting more active online. The Rio Grande Valley is a target like many larger cities.
The Rio Grande River can be a hot spot for illegal activity this includes crossing over drugs and people at any time.
The same illegal activity can take place on a cell phone or computer.
“Not just terroristic threats but there’s the possibility that drug trafficking cartels and organizations can be using online encryption to hide their communication,” Ray Mendoza.
Former Federal Bureau of Investigations Intel Analyst Ray Mendoza worked on cybersecurity cases in the Valley.
"In the past, it's always been an issue where there was insufficient coverage from a cyber investigator standpoint until the today,” said Mendoza.
Mendoza is hopeful. On Tuesday, the Department of Justice announced their new Cyber-Digital Task Force.
He explained cybercrime is growing across the nation and in the Valley. It does not respect international boundaries.
“Mexican tourism comes to the Valley for shopping things like that; a lot of those travelers have a little more discretionary income for their shopping. So, even Mexican nationals who come to the Valley and shop can be targets,” said Mendoza.
The new task force will be able to focus more on international cybercrime and at the same time protect anyone on a screen.
This task force means your vote and personal information should be better protected.
Mendoza said to only visit well-known websites that already have good reputations and never click on links with unsolicited emails.
Mendoza recommended checking the site and only using sites that begin with HTTPS.
He also said not to pay with wire transfers or money grams and try using a credit card to pay for items.
Lastly, Mendoza explains it's easier to dispute charges from a credit card than to get a refund from using a debit card and never give out any personal information.