Cyber Security Tip #18

Be Cautious of Work At Home Scams Working from home, earn $500 a week commission. It sounds to good to be true, and it is. Scammers pass stolen cash to unsuspecting people, who transfer it back to the thieves via electronic payment. Your job with the work taken out is money laundering. Beware. If you ever unsure on if a work at home site is legit or any other online internet service offered be sure to act on your doubts. If you think an online shop or service is dodgy, do some checking. A WHOIS search may let you see the registration details of a site. Visit the website and check out your suspect site. Companies House also enables you to check out details about company addresses, owners and the like. Look for big discrepancies between onscreen addresses and physical offices. ‪#‎NCSAM‬

Cyber Security Tip #17

Be Aware of What Information You Put in Autoresponders Do you use autoresponder on your email accounts? While autoresponder is an awesome tool to let people know that you are away, hackers and crooks also see this as an awesome tool to determine the best time hack into your computer system or rob your home. As long as the autoresponder is enabled, it will automatically respond to anyone who emails you. Consider the verbiage you use. Do not give out specific details about your location or itinerary and consider using a phrase like, “I will not have access to email between (date) and (date).”

Cyber Security Tip #16

Beware of Rogue Anti-Virus Software Rogue software or “scareware” is fake antivirus or security software. Bad guys usually try to get you to install it by generating a pop-up window as you surf the web. The “updates” or “alerts” in the pop-up windows call for you to take some sort of action, such as clicking to install the software, accept recommended updates, or remove unwanted viruses or spyware. When you click, the rogue security software downloads to your computer. Here’s some ways to apply computer security best practices that will help protect your machine and minimize any potential impacts: 1. Don’t click on pop-up ads that advertise anti-virus or anti-spyware programs 2. Don’t download software from unknown sources. 3. Use and regularly update firewalls, anti-virus, and anti-spyware programs. 4. Patch operating systems, browsers, and other software programs. 5. Regularly scan and clean your computer. 6. Back up your critical files. Take Microsoft’s Real vs. Rogue quiz: to help you tell if a security warning is from your real antivirus software or from rogue security.

Cyber Security Tip #15: Ways to Safely Dispose of Old Computers

With the Holidays just around the corner, folks may be considering upgrading their old desktop or laptop to a newer model.  So what do people do with their old computers?  It is important to remember to erase all personal information from old computers before disposing or selling them.  Simply reformatting a hard drive or reinstalling the operating system does not guarantee that your personal information is actually gone from the computer. Here are some tips on how to safely dispose of them: You could physically destroy the hard drive For those who want to sell their old system or give it a family member, destroying the hard drive may not be a plausible option. In this case using a special “wipe” program will erase all your personal information.  Programs such as Active@ KillDisk and Softpedia DP Wiper, are free and meet government security standards. Both  Apple and Microsoft have refurbish programs that will safely dispose of old electronics and securely wipe the data for you.

Cyber Security Tip #14

Using online cloud services to store personal and professional documents is becoming more and more popular. With companies such as Apple and Microsoft now offering individuals up to 1tb of data at a minimal price, more internet users are enjoying the convenience of storing files in a cloud based location for easy access. That easy access can come at a price and as we have seen in recent weeks, with the celebrity iCloud leak, there are still several vulnerabilities in this new technology. Here are some tips to help protect your information on the Cloud: • Be aware of what information you’re providing online. Free isn’t always free. Many “free” services sell information about you like your hobbies, salary, family members, friends, location, profession, purchase and viewing history, to advertisers to make money. • Read websites’ privacy policies and terms of use. Don’t sign up for new cloud services without researching it. • Don’t post information that could be exploited by a bad guy or that you don’t want made public. • Don’t store unencrypted sensitive information in the cloud. You don’t know with whom you’re sharing the cloud! • Enable Two-Step Verification. With two-step verification, it’s necessary for you to input two different pieces of data in order to access your personal information. While it can be frustrating and time-consuming, it saves you from having to clean up the potential mess a hacker could make with your credit card information or private photos stolen from the cloud. ‪#‎NCSAM‬

Cyber Security Tip #13

Cyber Security Tip #13: How to spot a phishing email: It could be a phishing email if… There are misspelled words in the e-mail or it contains poor grammar. The message is asking for personally identifiable information, such as credit card numbers, account numbers, passwords, PINs or Social Security Numbers. There are “threats” or alarming statements that create a sense of urgency. For example: “Your account will be locked until we hear from you” or “We have noticed activity on your account from a foreign IP address.” The domain name in the message isn’t the one you’re used to seeing. It’s usually close to the real domain name but not exact. For example: Phishing website: Real website: ‪#‎NCSAM‬

Cyber Security Tip #12

Some Tips to Protect against Identity Theft Do not sign the back of your credit cards. Instead put “Photo ID Required” When you order your checks, don’t list any telephone number. You can always write it on the check at the time of the transaction. If you have a PO Box, use that instead of your home address or your work address. Be aware of which credit cards you carry! Many now have embedded RFID chips in which the information on one of those chips can be read surreptitiously by someone near you using a simple hand-held scanner. Place the contents of your wallet on a photocopy machine. Do both sides of each license, credit card, etc. You will know what you had in your wallet and all of the account numbers and phone numbers to call and cancel. Store those photo copies in a secure place and refresh it when you change cards ‪#‎NCSAM‬

Cyber Security Tip #11

Cyber Security Tip #11 5 Tips for Shopping Online Safely and Secure 1. Look for the lock! Before making a purchase online, make sure the site is secure: https:// or shttp:// in the URL Use familiar site! Start at a trusted site rather than shopping with a search engine. 2. Search results can be rigged to lead you astray, especially when you drift past the first few pages of links. 3. Don’t tell all! No online shopping store needs your social security number or your birthday to do business. 4. Don’t wait for your bill to come at the end of the month. Go online regularly during the holiday season and look at electronic statements for your credit card, debit card, and checking accounts. Make sure you don’t see any fraudulent charges, even originating from sites like PayPal 5. Think mobile! There’s no real need to be any more nervous about shopping on a mobile device than online. The trick is to use apps provided directly by the retailers, like Amazon, Target, etc. Use the apps to find what you want and then make the purchase directly. ‪#‎NCSAM‬

Cyber Security Tip #10

Five Ways to Keep Your Facebook Account Secure With social media sites like Facebook, hackers and crocks are finding it easier to not only find information about you but also using that information to bully you online. The news recently reported that military families are getting bullied by ISIS now on Facebook. They are being contacted and threaten with death. Here are some simple ways you can secure your Facebook account and avoid being bulled and hopefully avoid getting hacked. • Pick a strong password and never share it with anyone else. Use a combination of at least six numbers, letters, and punctuation marks (like ! and &). • Use Facebook’s extra security features such as setting up a one-time password to log into your account anytime you feel uncomfortable entering your real password on Facebook (ex: in a library or internet cafe). • Do not accept all Friend Requests. Not every Friend Request is legitimate. Keep your list of accepted friends and family close as you would in the non-digital world. • Be sure to watch what you place on your Wall. The Wall is exactly that, a wall such as the bulletin board at work or in school. When you make postings to your wall, the post is placed prominently on your Facebook site and also copied to all your friends and family as an update of what you are doing • Set up login notifications. Facebook can send you an alert every time someone accesses your account from an unknown computer or other device, enabling you to receive a warning that someone has gained unauthorized access to your account. ‪#‎NCSAM‬

Cyber Security Tip #8: 12 Steps to Protect Your Cell Phone from Impostors

With two-thirds of Americans owning a smartphone, it is becoming more important for users to take steps to protect themselves against cell phone fraud and scams.  In recognition of National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, the American Bankers Association suggests the following 12 steps to protect the data on your mobile device. Use the passcode lock on your smartphone and other devices. This will make it more difficult for thieves to access your email, texts and other information if your device is lost or stolen. Log out completely and close the app when you finish a mobile banking session. Watch out for public Wi-Fi. Public connections aren’t very secure, so don’t perform banking transactions on a public network. If you need to access your account, try disabling the Wi-Fi and switching to your mobile network. Use caution when downloading apps. Apps can contain malicious software, worms, and viruses. Beware of apps that ask for unnecessary “permissions.” Download the updates for your phone and mobile apps. Avoid storing sensitive information like passwords or a social security number on your mobile device. Beware of mobile phishing. Avoid opening links and attachments in emails and texts, especially from senders you don’t know. And be wary of ads (not from your security provider) claiming that your device is infected. Wipe your mobile device before you donate, sell or trade it using specialized software or using the manufacturer’s recommended technique. Some software allows you to wipe your device remotely if it is lost or stolen. Tell your financial institution immediately if you change your phone number or lose your mobile device. Be aware of shoulder surfers. The most basic form of information theft is observation. Be aware of your surroundings especially when you’re punching in sensitive information. Protect your phone from viruses and malicious software, or malware, just like you do for your computer by installing mobile security software. Report any suspected fraud to your bank immediately. #‎NCSAM