Phishing For Your Identity

Phishing For Your Identity

We have all received those emails that look like they are coming from trusted websites. Emails that direct you to a website that looks familiar to update certain information, even personal data. Beware when these sites are asking you to update secure information such as social security numbers, passwords or even credit card numbers or bank information.   What makes these emails so trusted is that you know the business name as one where you have done business in the past. The logo, colors and look and feel of the site look so familiar. One of the most recent examples is your domain name registrar that says your domain is about to expire. Or your hosting company that says you have run out of hosting space and your website will be taken down if you don’t update your information.   There is a website called WhoIs.com that will give anyone who searches all the details about a domain – where it is registered, who owns it, the address, both email and physical, of the owner and where it is hosted. I was recently introduced to a “scraper” that will create a spreadsheet of all this information for as many websites as you put into the program. Right there at their fingertips is all the information a hacker needs. (More information later on how to protect this.)   You are tempted to click on the link provided because it is so convenient and then when you do it is natural to want to correct false information. Much to your regret you find out later this was a false website that...
Summer Guide to Cyber Safety Part 2

Summer Guide to Cyber Safety Part 2

Today we will discuss if you really have to stay connected while on vacation. In our previous article we recommended you stay away from public computers such as those in hotels and Internet Cafés. But sometimes that is easier said than done so here is a short guide to Going Online in Public. First and foremost of all if you have the least amount of concern regarding the computer you are using DO NOT use it to access sensitive sites like banking, brokerage, etc. This is obviously a judgment call and you best use your good judgment here. You just don’t want to use a compromised computer. If you log onto an information sensitive web site, be sure to logout when you have completed your cycle. Do the following Log out delete the web history close the browser when you are done. This is important –  you don’t want any sensitive data stuck in the cache or in any way accessible. If you would like to increase your cyber browsing security you can install a portable version of Firefox on a USB drive and load the browser directly from it instead of the computer. This would increase your cyber security. Backup and Encrypt your data so even the snoopers cannot find their way. Use only the strongest of passcodes or phrases. Of course keep your Anti-Virus up to date. When you return from traveling, it is a good idea to stop by your local computer experts at PCRx and have them do a complete scan of your laptop.  This only takes a few minutes and can save you hours...
Summer Guide to Cyber Safety

Summer Guide to Cyber Safety

The summertime is here in full force – tourists, vacations, travel for fun and business. Most of us will hit the road sometime this summer.  With all the devices that travel with us to stay connected from laptops to iPads to SmartPhones, we are more than ever at risk to a security breach. Some of this risk is harmless and others will cause you to need serious computer repair. Hackers love to take advantage of unaware travelers and we need to stay sharp.  Keep in mind that hotels, airports and other WIFI networks are hostile territory and we need to have our defenses up for cyber safety. Here are a few tips from Myrtle Beach Computer Repair Common Sense Check – you have all heard the saying “If it looks to be good to be true, it probably isn’t true.”  This philosophy holds true in the cyber world as well as in the real world.  If your summer vacation to Washington DC offers a personal meeting with the president, chances are it won’t happen.  Do your homework on any offer and make sure that the company that stands behind the offer has a good reputation.  Look for any hidden charges or requests for information that is not necessary for the transaction.  Check with the International Air Transportation Association or the Better Business Bureau to ensure cyber safety. Unbelievable Coupon Deals – there are reputable social media sites such as Groupon or Living Social that offer great deals.  However, many sites have taken on the “look and feel” of a legitimate site and are there to simply scam you, install...
What Is Phishing And How To Protect Your Computer

What Is Phishing And How To Protect Your Computer

The best holiday gift we can give is to always make sure that your computer is fully backed up.  No matter how cautious you are online, you are still open to a cyber security threat.  Call us today and ask about our backup plans. Phishing attacks are also rampant and one of the major cyber threats to any company today. So, you need to be highly aware and vigilant of these as well. Phishing usually involves hackers making use of fake emails to trick you into sharing important personal data such as your social security number or perhaps your credit card number and online accounts and passwords. What are the ways that these Phishers can attack you in the cyber space? Through the use of fake emails. Phishers can make use of the identity of established and reputable companies such as online banks, retailers or credit card companies to send out fake emails to individuals and organizations. Emails of this nature usually contain links that are fake but highly similar to the actual online website of that company they are representing. The moment you put in your account information and log ins to those websites, the information can already become available to the phishers who tricked you into sharing your important data. Through the so-called keystroke programs. Phishers will still employ fake emails that contain links that will then install programs on your computer without your knowledge and permission. These programs have the ability to record every keystroke typed by the computer owner. Information like usernames, passwords, account numbers, credit card numbers could then become available to phishers. Hijacking...
Security and Your Computer

Security and Your Computer

Whether you are a business owner or a home user, computers have found their way into every aspect of our daily lives. We use them to store data, do homework, for online shopping and sometimes tools for our jobs.  The amount of data, photos and videos that are stored on our computers grows daily.  Many of these items are one of a kind and can never be replaced.  We need to protect ourselves from loss of the valuable information. Most businesses have systems to secure their data from hackers.  Home computer users need to do the same.  Think of the information that may be on your computer – credit card numbers, social security numbers and other personal data is stored on your computer.  Everyone is a computer security risk. When a computer is intentionally “broken into”, this is called cybercrime.  Agencies such as the FBI watch for this type of crime and unethical computer activity such as cracking, hacking and cyber extortion. Types of Computer Villains There was a period in time when hacking had a positive connotation.  However, since the onset of computer crimes, hacking has become a crime that is closely watched.  A hacker is an individual whose goal is to gain access to your computer or computer network illegally.  Their primary purpose is to obtain personal information which they can use or sell on the internet.  Many hackers use the excuse they are doing the system administrator a favor by showing them where there are deficiencies in their computer security. Give PcRx a call if you suspect your computer has been hacked. We can help you...
The What, Who, Where and Why of Spam

The What, Who, Where and Why of Spam

Spam – Can You Avoid It? If you have been watching our Facebook page, you know that we have been trying to keep you posted on spam emails that are harmful to your computer. At one time, spam was nothing more than clutter in your inbox, however, now it is commonly used as a way to commit electronic crime and even corporate espionage.  We have develop the 4 Ws of spam to answer the questions we get asked most often. What is Spam? Often referred to as junk email, it is defined by internet fraud detectors as unsolicited commercial email.  This is email that is sent out in bulk to a vast number of people who never requested email from the sender.  These emails can range from simple advertisements to a program that is designed to hijack your system and to cause damage to your computer. Some of the most common spam commercial advertisers are for: Pyramid schemes Pornographic websites Mortgage loans Chain letters Credit repair Fraudulent pharmaceuticals Software that has been stolen or pirated The more dangerous forms of spam include viruses that will infect your computer, what is called a Trojan horse than will take over your email program and then proceed to send spam to your friends and phishing scams whose intent is to obtain financial and personal information. Who Spams? People responsible for spam are referred to as “Spammers.”  There are actually two types of spammers. Honest spammers – these are people who have complied with all anti-spam laws and actually have the consent of the recipient to receive the email. These are businesses who...