● Hackers and Phishing Emails: How to Avoid Both

It might seem like we talk a lot about antivirus software and staying on top of the latest updates for your computer, but all that talk is for a good reason.  A report was released earlier this week saying that hackers had stolen the passwords to over two million Facebook, Yahoo, Gmail, etc. accounts.  Read more on CNN.com:

“The massive data breach was a result of keylogging software maliciously installed on an untold number of computers around the world, researchers at cybersecurity firm Trustwave said. The virus was capturing log-in credentials for key websites over the past month and sending those usernames and passwords to a server controlled by the hackers.”

“Want to know whether your computer is infected? Just searching programs and files won’t be enough, because the virus running in the background is hidden, Miller said. Your best bet is to update your antivirus software and download the latest patches for Internet browsers, Adobe (ADBE) and Java.” – CNN.com

Making sure your antivirus software is up-to-date is one of the best ways to avoid getting these types of malicious programs on your computer.  If you think your network might be vulnerable, give us a call!  We are a authorized Trend Micro re-seller and can help you keep your data protected.


Another way that unscrupulous people are trying to get your personal information online is through phishing.  Phishing  is the act of attempting to acquire information such as usernames, passwords, banking details, and sometimes- indirectly- money, by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication.  Many times these emails are blatantly obvious in their attempts, such as the popular emails claiming to be a foreign prince who needs your assistance with smuggling large amounts of money out of their country.  But many of them can be a little trickier to recognize.  Tech Republic’s “10 Tips for spotting a phishing email” has good advice and examples to be on the watch for.  Here’s one of their tips:

“4. The message asks for personal information – No matter how official an email message might look, it is always a bad sign if the message asks for personal information. Your bank doesn’t need you to send them your account number. They already know what it is. Similarly, a reputable company should never send an email asking for your password, credit card number, or the answer to a security question.”

Head to TechRepublic.com to read the rest.  99% of the time, being able to recognize a fake email from a real one will keep you out of trouble.

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