The Cyber Security and Technology Crime Bureau (CSTCB) of the Hong Kong Police Force has introduced CyberDefender, a new metaverse platform aimed at educating the public about the potential dangers associated with Web3 and the metaverse. The initiative seeks to equip citizens with the knowledge to navigate the digital age and prevent technology-related crimes.
Accompanied by an online event titled “Exploring the Metaverse,” CyberDefender was unveiled through three virtual venues, facilitating discussions on crime prevention strategies within the metaverse. Mr. Ip Cheuk-yu, the chief inspector of CSTCB, emphasized the importance of exercising caution in the metaverse, urging attendees to apply the same level of vigilance as they do while using the internet.
Crimes prevalent in cyberspace, such as investment fraud, unauthorized access, theft, and sexual offenses, can also occur within the metaverse, according to Mr. Ip. The decentralized nature of virtual assets in Web3 could increase the risk of cybercriminals targeting end-point devices, virtual asset wallets, and smart contracts, potentially leading to asset theft.
Focus on the Younger Generation
The CyberDefender educational initiatives primarily focus on raising awareness among the younger generation. The Hong Kong Police Force intends to organize public education programs through the “CyberDefender Metaverse” platform, aiming to educate teenagers about the latest developments in information technology, potential pitfalls, and the significance of preventing technology-related crimes.
During the first quarter of 2023, the Hong Kong Police Force received 663 reports involving virtual assets, resulting in a total loss of $570 million. This marks a significant 75% increase compared to the same period in 2022, highlighting the growing importance of addressing cyber threats and promoting cybersecurity awareness.
The Role of CyberDefender
As metaverse technology continues to evolve and gain prominence, initiatives like CyberDefender play a crucial role in equipping individuals with the knowledge and awareness needed to navigate this digital landscape safely. By educating the public about potential risks and promoting cybersecurity practices, the Hong Kong Police Force strives to mitigate the occurrence of technology-related crimes and ensure the security of citizens in the digital era.