Who to Call When Your Computer is Hacked A Comprehensive Guide

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In the digital age, computer hacking has become an increasingly prevalent concern. With vast amounts of sensitive data stored on our devices, it’s crucial to know who to turn to for help in the event of a cyberattack. This article provides a comprehensive guide to identifying the right authorities and resources to contact when your computer has been hacked.

What to Do Immediately After a Hack:

  • Disconnect from the Internet: Isolate your computer from the network to prevent further damage and data loss.
  • Change Passwords: Update all your online accounts, including email, banking, and social media.
  • Scan for Malware: Use antivirus software or a reliable online scanner to identify and remove any malicious files.
  • Document the Incident: Take screenshots and gather evidence of the hack, such as suspicious emails or website activity.

Who to Call When Your Computer is Hacked:

1. Law Enforcement:

  • Local Police: Contact your local police department to file a report and initiate an investigation. They may have specialized cybercrime units.
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI): The FBI has jurisdiction over major cybercrimes, including hacking and data breaches. You can file a complaint online or through a local field office.

2. Government Agencies:

  • Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA): CISA is the lead federal agency for cybersecurity and can provide guidance and support.
  • Federal Trade Commission (FTC): The FTC investigates identity theft and fraud, which often occur as a result of computer hacking.

3. Cybersecurity Professionals:

  • Managed Security Service Providers (MSSPs): MSSPs offer comprehensive cybersecurity services, including incident response, threat detection, and recovery.
  • Forensic Experts: Forensic investigators can analyze evidence and determine the nature and scope of the hack.

4. Credit Reporting Agencies:

  • Equifax, Experian, TransUnion: Contact the major credit reporting agencies to freeze your credit and prevent unauthorized activity.

5. Insurance Companies:

  • Homeowners Insurance: Your homeowners insurance policy may cover cyberattacks and data breaches.
  • Cybersecurity Insurance: Specialized cybersecurity insurance policies can reimburse you for losses and provide coverage for incident response costs.

When to Seek Legal Advice:

In certain situations, it may be advisable to consult with an attorney. This includes:

  • The hack involves sensitive data, such as financial or medical information.
  • The hack has resulted in significant financial loss or damage to reputation.
  • You suspect identity theft or other serious crimes related to the hack.

Tips for Choosing the Right Experts:

  • Look for professionals with relevant experience and certifications in cybersecurity or forensic investigation.
  • Get recommendations from reputable sources or industry organizations.
  • Verify their credentials and ask for references.
  • Consider the cost of their services and ensure it aligns with your budget.

Additional Resources:


Knowing who to call when your computer is hacked is essential to protect your sensitive data, prevent further damage, and initiate an appropriate response. By following the steps outlined in this guide and contacting the right authorities and professionals, you can effectively mitigate the impact of a cyberattack and safeguard your digital assets.

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