Headlines in today’s news warn of another ransomware emails attack actively infecting companies around the world.
NetGain Technologies takes these threats seriously. Our engineers ensure our supported systems are backed up, with software updates completed and anti-virus (AV) updated. Some of the companies we support put in additional layers of protection that further protect their networks. Examples are web or spam filtering. While no virus or malware is 100 percent preventable, we take measures to ensure your network is in line with standard business practices.
Review the following technology security information to help you avoid falling victim to hacking attempts. These tips first appeared in NetGain’s quarterly client security communication.
12 simple rules to avoid ransomware emails
- Look at the sender’s email address – 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 with the information provided in the email.
- Look at the email subject line – Does the subject line create a sense of urgency? These may be viruses. Trying to force an immediate response may be an indicator. Always use control and caution when addressing an email of urgency.
- Look at the body of the email – Is the message properly formatted? Be cautious of misspellings. Does the email have the company’s contact information and/or logo graphics that you’ve been accustomed to seeing if you’ve received mail from them before?
- Look for URL links in the message – Embedded links may be redirection links with the intent to take you to a malicious site. By hovering the mouse over the link, it will provide information about where the link is redirecting you. It’s better to type the URL in your browser than to trust the hyperlink. Always use caution when clicking an external link.
- Look at the email attachment – Are you expecting the attachment? Do you recognize the type of file? Attachments should always be treated with extreme caution. If you are uncertain of the legitimacy of an attachment, do not open it and contact your I.T. representative.
- Use Shift + Delete to delete emails believed to be malicious – This action will permanently delete the email and not just move it to your “deleted items” folder.
- Don’t reveal too much information – Do not reveal personal or financial information in an email, and do not respond to email solicitations that ask for this information. This includes following links sent to you in an email.
- When in doubt, throw it out – Links in emails, tweets, posts, and online advertisements are often how cybercriminals try to steal your personal information. Even if you know the source, if something looks suspicious, delete.
- Look for the HTTPS lock icon – Before sending sensitive information over the internet, check the security of the website. The HTTPS lock icon indicates the site is secure.
- 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 (.com versus .net, for example).
- Check that your antivirus is up to date – Check that your antivirus protection is active and up to date on your system. If you don’t know, ask your I.T. representative.
- Don’t access personal email on the corporate network – The defenses may not be in place to stop a virus or malicious email from executing through those channels.