The number and level of sophistication for phishing scams continues to rise during Governor Little’s ‘Stay At Home’ order. With an increasing number of people working and educating at home, cyber criminals have upped the ante in their attempts to take advantage of this growing audience. Security measures (such as firewall protection and antivirus software) are traditionally lacking inside a home environment, thus creating a window of opportunity for cyber criminals to sneak in under the radar. Add in the heightened level of mental fatigue many of us face due to the stress and uncertainty surrounding the corona-virus epidemic, and it could be a recipe for disaster.
STOP. LOOK. THINK. Don’t Be Fooled. Phishing emails often look like they’re from a company you know and trust. They may look like they’re from a bank, a credit card company, a social networking site, or a store you’ve done business with in the past. They’ll often tell a story and attempt to trick you into taking some kind of action. They may:
- say they’ve noticed some suspicious activity or log-in attempts
- claim there’s a problem with your account or your payment information
- say you must confirm some personal information
- include a fake invoice
- want you to click on a link to make a payment
- say you’re eligible to register for a government refund
- offer a coupon for free stuff
If you receive a phishing email contact your employer’s IT department right away. Otherwise, delete the email while being careful not to click any links. If you’re an ATC email customer, be sure to mark the email as spam so the sender can’t send you fraudulent emails ever again.
Oops! I’ve already clicked a phishing email. What now? If your employer doesn’t already have protocol established, follow these instructions to help protect your personal information.
- Disconnect from the internet. If your computer is infected with virus or malware, this will cut off your computer’s connection to the hacker.
- Run a full system virus/malware scan.
- Change your passwords.
- Backup your important files.
Don’t forget! ATC’s eTech service is always here to help. Our technicians can help clean up, scan, repair and update your computer – without ever stepping foot inside your home. They’re available 24-7 and can provide you with a free quote before performing any work.
It can be tough to maintain a high-level of alert while monitoring your overflowing inbox. However, it only takes one wrong click to make a bad situation even worse. Safeguard your identity. STOP. LOOK. AND THINK before clicking suspicious emails. As always, if you have any questions or need additional help, we’re just a phone call away. Contact us anytime.