Internet Safety and Security

The internet has become an integral part of modern society with four out of five households in the UK now ‘switched on’. Social media has been a major factor in the increase with websites such as Facebook and Twitter becoming part of everyday life.

In the past, internet access was restricted to personal computers and laptops. However, the development of smartphones allows people to access the internet wherever they are, whenever they want.

This ease of use and availability means that people have a bigger ‘online presence’, increasing the risk of online vulnerability. People are now using their phones for a variety of conveniences, such as online banking, shopping and dating, making phones a prime target for criminal activity.

The millions of users around the world using the internet for a wide range of things have opened up new opportunities for criminal activities such as fraud and identity theft. This type of online activity is sometimes known as ‘cybercrime’.

About one in four internet users has become a victim of online crime. Many security exploits are used to allow an unauthorised person to gain access to your computer. This person can then:

  • Get your personal information such as passwords for accessing your online bank account, credit card details and emails
  • Use your internet connection to send spam/junk messages to your e-mail contacts
  • Use your computer for other malicious purposes
  • Simply remove or destroy content on your computer.

Internet crime is a worldwide problem, and one which Cheshire Police takes very seriously. Following the advice in this section of the website will help to minimise your chances of becoming a victim of cybercrime.

For more detailed information on internet fraud and online scams please visit the fraud page.

You can also download a copy of the Stay Secure Online 2017 document.

Advice and information


This section outlines the many ways a person can be bullied online or through a mobile phone and provides advice for dealing with cyberbullies.

Identity theft

This section helps you to understand the different types of identity theft and provides you with advice on how to protect yourself from identity theft.

Protect your computer

This section highlights some of the risks to your computer including tips on how to protect your PC or Mac.

Protect yourself

This section covers important topics such as identity theft, social networking and cyberbullying.

Online services

This section covers the services that the internet offers including buying/banking online, auction websites and passwords.

Social networking

This sections gives you guidance on using social networking and social media sites safely.

Get Safe Online

We work in partnership with Get Safe Online – an online resource of easy-to-understand information and practical advice on how to protect yourself, your computers, mobiles devices and your business against fraud, identity fraud, viruses and many other problems encountered online. It also contains guidance on safe online shopping, gaming and dating and a wide variety of topics.