Cybersecurity Tip of the Week

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Purge unnecessary information from your mobile phone
by FCNB on 


Purge unnecessary information from your mobile phone


Erase everything you don’t absolutely need to keep on your mobile phone, like your browsing history, passwords, emails and text messages. That way, if your phone is ever stolen, that information will not be.

 

If you decide to sell your phone, remember to do a factory data reset before you give it to the new owner. This will wipe all of the data that has ever been stored on it, including access to your personal accounts, systems and apps data, photos, videos, music, etc.

 

Back up your information first, and then wipe the phone clean so the next owner cannot log into your accounts or use your private pictures, contacts and confidential information.

 

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Identifying fraudulent emails
by FCNB on 

Identifying fraudulent emails
If you receive an official-looking email, but aren’t sure if it is valid, look out for these telltale signs of a scam:
  • Poor grammar and misspelled words.
  • You’re asked to pay money up front to be eligible for a prize.
  • You’re urged to act quickly.
  • Emails from large companies sent from a Hotmail or Gmail account. Legitimate corporations don’t use these accounts for business.
  • The email begins with “Dear Sir/Madam”.
  • “You’ve won!” even though you haven’t entered any contests.
  • You’re told to call a 1-900 number to claim your prize. There is always a charge for calling a 1-900 number.
  • Online advertising banners offering free gifts or services.
  • A job offer that sounds too good to be true.

If you’re still not sure, contact the company directly (don’t reply to the email).  Ask them if the information is legitimate.

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Charging your mobile device
by FCNB on 


Charging your mobile device

 

Avoid charging your mobile device by plugging it into a computer or other device that you do not control.

 

Malicious software could be transferred onto your device while it is connected. Instead, plug it into a wall socket.

 

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Wi-Fi Safety
by FCNB on 

Wi-Fi Safety

Information being transmitted over unsecure Wi-Fi (like in a hotel lobby or coffee shop) is vulnerable to being stolen. Some of the information that you are storing or sharing from your device, like the time you usually leave the house in the morning, your health history, and financial information could be useful to cybercriminals and should be kept safe.

Be cautious when using public Wi-Fi networks as they are not always secure. It is safest to use trusted Wi-Fi connections that are password protected. Turn off Wi-Fi, GPS and Bluetooth when you are not using them.



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Stop saving your debit or credit card details on your online accounts
by FCNB on 


Stop saving your debit or credit card details on your online accounts

 

You know that tempting little “remember my details” box?  Don’t check it.  Not for your cloud provider; not for your favourite ecommerce retailer; don’t save your debit or credit card details anywhere online! No cards saved on any account, no matter how secure you might consider it.

 

If you want to buy something online, take your time and fill in the credit card details every single time. It’s worth the 30 seconds it takes. The lazy alternative comes with a high risk of card fraud.

 

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Should you pay in case of a ransomware attack?
by FCNB on 


Should you pay in case of a ransomware attack?

 

This question may have crossed your mind. If it hasn’t, you should consider what you would do. Simply put, there are two scenarios:

 

  1. If you have a backup of your data, the answer is NO; you shouldn’t pay. Even if you do get infected with ransomware, you can always wipe your system, reinstall your operating system (OS), restore your backup and carry on.
  2. If you don’t have a backup of your data, the answer is still NO. Even the FBI advises the same. There are several reasons for this:

        • Cyber attackers are not exactly trustworthy individuals, so there’s no guarantee you’ll get your decryption key and your data back.
        • By paying the ransom, you’re fueling the malware economy, which is already thriving and affecting all of us through the damages it creates.
        • Every paid ransom is feeding another similar attack on other people, and the next victim could be someone you love.

 

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Beware of fake antivirus
by FCNB on 


Beware of fake antivirus

 

This is one of the oldest tricks in the cyber criminal’s book. We have all seen at one point on our screens: “You have been infected! Download our antivirus right now to protect your computer!”

 

A legitimate antivirus company will never advertise its products like this. These fake antivirus scams are so well created that they could fool even the most cyber security savvy user.

 

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Social Networks are not safe places
by FCNB on 

Social Networks are not safe places


The more information you share, the more appealing you are to cyber criminals. Consequently, social media is the perfect place for cyber criminals to do what they do best: impersonate, manipulate, steal data and/or money and compromise your account. And the infections they launch often spread like wildfire.

 

Even if you are cyber security savvy, that doesn’t mean your Facebook friends are too. Plus, social media threats are getting more varied and sophisticated.

 

Tips for staying safe on social media:

 

Avoid geotagging photos. Most smartphones and many digital cameras automatically attach the exact location where a photo was taken – and when you share it online, the geotag can give away your address or let criminals know that you're on vacation, which could make your home a target for break-in. Check the manual of your device to turn off geotagging, and remove geotags from older photos with photo editing software.

 

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Do you https?
by FCNB on 


Do you https?


When shopping or banking online make sure you’re using secure sites. Websites that start with https:// or shttp:// use higher security measures than ones that begins with http://. To make your browsing more secure, install HTTPS Everywhere for Chrome, Firefox, Android and Opera. This free extension will encrypt your communication with major websites, thus increasing your browsing security. This will make the data you send and receive from the websites encrypted, so cyber criminals won’t be able to snoop on the information transfer and steal your data.

 

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Be wary of strangers
by FCNB on 

Be wary of strangers


The Internet makes it easy for people to hide their identity and motives. Consider limiting who is able to contact you on social media sites.


If you interact with people you don’t know online, be careful about the information you reveal and agreeing to meet them in person. 

 

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