Being Secured Against Hackers and Criminals dealing with Covid-19 and other viruses

Cyber threats are real. Everyone is being attacked on a daily basis from outside agents. These agents for the most part have criminal intent on using the Covid-19 fear. You must be on guard against emails that have attachments.

User email accounts, contact information or even companies are used to fake a person into thinking the email is from someone they know.

You must check the actual email address where the item came from. For the most part an email could come from an insurance company or finance house. The hacker will show the company logo but the email address has a fake domain.

Security Steps

1. Install and maintain anti-virus software. One recommendation is Norton Security which will scan for a wide range of threats, but no one program can catch 100% of threats. The second is MalwareBytes that will look for hidden files that can extract key information.  IT people usually maintain systems regularly, including “virus definition updates” but now that most people are working remotely you must be extra careful!

2. Make sure your anti-virus is integrated with your email program. Let it scan all incoming files. Usually the AV software will remove the attachment from the email.  Make sure you do not click on links that are part of an email. If the email is coming from a friend and looks bogus than you can reach out to verify that with them.

3. Only open attachments or click on links you expect to receive. Do not open attachments or click on links if it indicates coronavirus, COVID, accounts, logins, passwords or other words to lure you into opening the file.

4. Beware Of Emails coming from government or finance.  No bank or IRS or FBI or your old school will be sending emails requesting private information. Most will send regular mail to your location if there is a issue.

5. Backup Backup and Backup. Should disaster strike, your best protection is to have backups of your work. You can use the cloud or internal drives to safe store information. Always backup otherwise you may get caught short.

6. Paying ransom. You will get emails telling you that a particular password has been compromise and you better pay them off. DO NOT DO PAY ANYONE MONEY. Stories have been told that government offices were taken over and the information was encrypted. That is mostly due to lack of security or an employee decided to open an outside email.

Security and Passwords

7. Change Password every quarter. For a small shop changing your password every quarter is better than never. The password strength is the key. Something like “BaBies@0@01500” is stronger to crack then “Password99” or the famous “12345678”. Larger companies will force you to change your password every month but a home user can be a little easier.

8. Do Not Use the same password for EVERYTHING. Using the same password defeats security and if there is a breach where your password is stolen. Then most of your personal and business accounts are open.

So if you look into security now, do daily backups and watch what you receive via emails you should be safe.