Category : security

There are many professions in the world that bring value to society, and for each one of them there are actors out there who make it their business to find new and improved ways of taking that value for themselves. It may be unfortunate that everyone will likely be targeted by one scam or another at some point in their lives; however, there are several ways to protect yourself and keep your hard-earned cash for yourself. This week we are going to look at some broad categories of scams that are persistent, but this is by no means an exhaustive list, as every day new scams are created and attempted. 

Phishing Scams - Phishing scams involve fraudulent attempts to obtain sensitive information, such as passwords, credit card details, or social security numbers, by posing as a trustworthy person or organization. These scams are often attempted through emails, text messages, or fake websites. Protect yourself by never sharing personal information through unsolicited requests, verifying the legitimacy of communication methods, and being cautious of suspicious links or attachments. And remember, IT services will never ask for your password! 

Online Shopping Scams - With the rise of e-commerce, online shopping scams have become prevalent. These scams can involve counterfeit products, non-delivery of items, or fraudulent sellers. Stay safe by shopping from reputable websites and sellers, reading customer reviews, verifying payment security, and being cautious of deals that appear too good to be true. 

Tech Support Scams - Tech support scams prey on individuals' concerns about their devices' security or performance. Scammers pose as tech support representatives and trick victims into granting remote access to their computers or paying for unnecessary services. Remember that legitimate tech support services will never contact you unsolicited and will never ask for your password. Only seek assistance from reputable sources and be cautious of anyone pressuring you into sharing personal information or granting access to your device. 

Romance Scams - Romance scams occur when individuals are deceived emotionally and financially by someone posing as a romantic interest. Scammers build trust, often through online dating platforms, and exploit victims for money or personal information. Exercise caution when developing online relationships, be wary of requests for financial assistance, and consider conducting a reverse image search to verify the authenticity of profile pictures. 

Investment and Financial Scams - Investment and financial scams promise high returns with minimal risk, targeting individuals seeking lucrative opportunities. These scams can involve pyramid schemes, Ponzi schemes, or fraudulent investment brokers. Protect yourself by being skeptical of "get-rich-quick" schemes that sound too good to be true. Be aware of one of the most common financial scams, the ‘overpayment’ scam where a payment is sent to you, and it is ‘accidentally’ too much and they want you to send back the difference. You’ll find out soon that the original payment is fraudulent and will be rejected by your bank! 


Protecting Yourself: 

Verify and Authenticate - Before sharing any personal or financial information, verify the legitimacy of the individual, organization, or website. Double-check email addresses, domain names, or phone numbers and be cautious of unsolicited requests. Keep in mind that email addresses can be faked or “spoofed;” when in doubt, reach out to IT Services (785-670-3000, or utilize the “Phish Alert Report” phish alert button in Outlook desktop applications. 

Secure Your Online Presence - Protect your online accounts with strong, unique passphrases and enable multifactor authentication whenever possible. Regularly monitor your financial statements and credit reports for any unauthorized activity. 

Report and Seek Help - If you encounter a scam via email, utilize the “Phish Alert Report” button phish alert buttonon Outlook desktop applications. If you become a victim of a scam, report it to the appropriate authorities, such as local law enforcement or the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Seek support from professionals and resources available to victims of scams.  


Did you know October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month? Watch this space or all month for more security tips!

Thank you for staying vigilant!

--WU ITS Information Security



2023 2022

Available Blogs