Online Family Protection is Essential
As we perform repairs and upgrades on customer's computers, it is evident and quite concerning that many people use their devices online with no valid security software installed.
People often assume they are protected as most new computers come with Norton or McAfee products installed although these are normally only on a 30-day trial and rarely renewed leaving you and your machine exposed!
As an indication one of the major Internet security software producers 'Kaspersky' is detecting on average 560,000 new online threats every single day - so running with no protection on your computer is literally 'playing with fire' especially when most people use their computers for inputing sensitive, private information for activities such as online purchases and banking.
Also quite concerning is the number of people whose children have a free rein on a family computer that has no protection, Parental controls, or Internet safety software installed which means their young children are exposed to the worst of the Internet - Bullying, grooming by online predators via chat-rooms and social media, extreme violence, indecent images and videos etc.
At Home-Computer-Fix.co.uk we suggest, if you are worried about this, contact us and book your computer in to be checked and have any existing risks removed and have a suitable security suite installed and configured correctly.
It often urges you to act quickly, because your account has been compromised, your order cannot be fulfilled or there is another urgent matter to address.
If you are unsure whether an email request is legitimate, try to verify it with these steps:
Contact the company directly – using information provided on an account statement, on the company’s official website or on the back of a credit card.
Search for the company online – but not with information provided in the email.
Spam is the electronic equivalent of junk mail. The term refers to unsolicited, bulk – and often unwanted – email. Here are ways to reduce spam:
- Enable filters on your email programs: Most internet service providers (ISPs) and email providers offer spam filters; however, depending on the level you set, you may end up blocking emails you want. It’s a good idea to occasionally check your junk folder to ensure the filters are working properly.
- Report spam: Most email clients offer ways to mark an email as spam.
- Reporting spam will also help to prevent the messages from being directly delivered to your inbox.
- Own your online presence: Consider hiding your email address from online profiles and social networking sites or only allowing certain people to view your personal information.
Phishing attacks use email or malicious websites (clicking on a link) to collect personal and financial information or infect your machine with malware and viruses.
Spear phishing involves highly specialized attacks against specific targets or small groups of targets to collect information or gain access to systems. For example, a cybercriminal may launch a spear phishing attack against a business to gain credentials to access a list of customers. From that attack, they may launch a phishing attack against the customers of the business. Since they have gained access to the network, the email they send may look even more authentic and because the recipient is already customer of the business, the email may more easily make it through filters and the recipient maybe more likely to open the email.
The cybercriminal can use even more devious social engineering efforts such as indicating there is an important technical update or new lower pricing to lure people.
- Don’t reveal personal or financial information in an email, and do not respond to email solicitations for this information. This includes following links sent in email.
- Before sending or entering sensitive information online, check the security of the website.
Pay attention to the website’s URL. Malicious websites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the URL may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (e.g., .com versus .net).
- If you are unsure whether an email request is legitimate, try to verify it by contacting the company directly. Contact the company using information provided on an account statement, not information provided in an email.
- Keep a clean machine. Keep all software on internet-connected devices – including PCs, smartphones and tablets – up to date to reduce risk of infection from malware.
- When in doubt, throw it out: Links in email, tweets, posts and online advertising are often how cybercriminals try to compromise your information. If it looks suspicious, even if you know the source, it’s best to delete or – if appropriate – mark it as junk.
- Think before you act: Be wary of communications that implores you to act immediately, offers something that sounds too good to be true or asks for personal information.
- Make your passphrase a sentence: A strong passphrase is a sentence that is at least 12 characters long. Focus on positive sentences or phrases that you like to think about and are easy to remember (for example, “I love country music.”). On many sites, you can even use spaces!
- Unique account, unique passphrase: Having separate passphrases for every account helps to thwart cybercriminals. At a minimum, separate your work and personal accounts and make sure that your critical accounts have the strongest passphrases.
- Lock down your login: Fortify your online accounts by enabling the strongest authentication tools available, such as biometrics, security keys or a unique one-time code through an app on your mobile device. Your usernames and passphrases are not enough to protect key accounts like email, banking and social media.
- Report it to the appropriate staff within your organization, including IT Support / Network administrators. They can be alert for any suspicious or unusual activity.
- If you believe your bank accounts may be compromised, contact your bank immediately, explain what has happened and follow their guidance.
- Watch for any suspicious or unauthorized charges to your bank account.
- Consider reporting the attack to the police.
- Bullying & Harassment
- Self-harm or Suicide
- Online Abuse
- Violent Content
- Unwanted Sexual Advances
- Pornographic Content
Click CEOP button is an asset of the National Crime Agency’s CEOP Command. The CEOP Command works to protect children from the harm of sexual abuse and exploitation both online and offline.