‘Tis the Season to be Careful!

‘Tis the Season to be Careful!

‘Tis the season to be jolly, right? That’s what the song tells us, but the holidays will not seem so jolly if you are victimized by a hacker! Although it may not be possible to eliminate all of the hazards, there are precautions that you can take to minimize dangers to your devices and your life! It begins with the recognition of where intruders are most likely to invade.

Cell phones and laptops are frequently lost, especially when people are traveling. Airports, hotels, restaurants, taxi companies—all report hundreds of unclaimed mobile devices that have been left behind. Being extremely cautious with your devices, and perhaps registering them with services that can locate, recover, and kill lost or stolen devices, will keep you safer.

Email greetings are sent in abundance during the holiday season. Not all email greetings, however, are what they seem! Cybercriminals have been known to disguise viruses and spyware into what seems like an innocent greeting from friends or relatives. Open attachments with great care!

Using social networking is a very popular way to reconnect with friends during the holidays, but these sites are frequently targeted for phishing attacks. Be careful what you click on—that new “friend” may not be a friend at all.

USB thumb drives, like cell phones and laptops, are often lost when people are traveling. USB drives are so small, making them easy to misplace or leave plugged into public PC’s; creating a hazard if those removable drives are not protected.

New gift devices, like smartphones and computers, are many times put into operation before security measures like anti-virus software are installed. Recipients are so anxious to use the new tools that they don’t take time in advance for necessary precautions. The lack of precautions makes the devices vulnerable to a host of problems.

Downloading games and free apps can expose users to malware. Be sure to examine carefully before installing them, and be wary of unsigned apps from unknown developers.

We hope your holidays are happy and safe. If the unthinkable happens, however, we’re here to help you. Just give us a call at 425-672-4806 or email us.


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