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Cybersecurity news you can use

from the Aware Force Cybersecurity Team.

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Sharing your password at work is always dangerous. Now it’s about to get more expensive at home. Netflix customers who share passwords with family members will soon pay $3 a month more for each additional account user. Axios estimates one in three Netflix users shares their account with others.  


The Wall Street Journal recommends users turn off 5G on their smartphones. Battery life, they say, can be reduced by 2 ½ hours per charge because 5G uses so much power without an appreciable improvement in user experience. Click on your phone's Settings button, then select the cellular network, followed by cellular network options, and then specify "4G." 


Hackers are using sophisticated new technology embedded on websites to plant ransomware on computers, making information on the computer unusable. According to Menlo Security, this ransomware can bypass existing antivirus protection. Scammers still use fake emails to get us to visit these websites. The top three brands impersonated in the emails are Microsoft, PayPal, and Amazon. A new phishing website imitating one of these brands is created every 1.7 minutes.

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The Aware Force Cybersecurity Team is dedicated to keeping you and your family safe online.


If you think you've clicked on a phishing email, an urgent text message, or received a suspicious voice mail, alert your supervisor right away so we can check it out. 

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"In 2017, the U.S. government banned all use of Kaspersky Lab software in federal information systems. Now I read where Germany is warning against using it. Should I get rid of it on my computer?"

Kaspersky is a brand of antivirus software — based in Russia — that's used by businesses and consumers worldwide. The company's products are highly rated by PCMag, Gartner,, among others. Kaspersky says they have taken steps to protect their software from tampering by the Russian government. Still, according to Reuters, Germany's cybersecurity agency is concerned that Kaspersky's software could be used by the Russian government for future cyberattacks, a claim Kaspersky denies. Remember, there are several other brands of antivirus software designed to add a layer of cyber protection to your computers, tablets, and phones. Do a search on the web for "best antivirus" to learn more.

"In a previous edition of the newsletter, there was a story about Samsung getting hacked, and how cyber crooks now have the ability to hack into Samsung smartphones. How can I tell if my phone has been hacked?" 


Samsung suffered a significant breach last month, and no doubt is working to mitigate it. The best advice is to update Samsung's software on your phone whenever you're notified. Samsung phones have built-in security software called "Knox", which is effective IF you stick to downloading apps from Google Play. TechRadar recommends purchasing and installing additional anti-virus on Android phones. They especially like BitDefender. Other antivirus brands include AVG, McAfee, Norton, Trend Micro, and Avast.

[From Richard J, cybersecurity student] "Tip to thwart hackers: Do not reveal your IP Address nor MAC address, or printer details as hackers can access your PC through the processor in your printer."

Richard, thanks for reaching out! For those not fluent in what you suggested, printers only use IP addresses if they're connected to the internet. Most home computers aren't. To your other point, you can hide your computer's IP and MAC addresses by purchasing and installing VPN software for your personal computer. Plus, if you connect to Wi-Fi networks using your smartphone, consider installing a VPN on it, too. TechRadar likes these brands: ExpressVPN, NordVPN, and SurfShark. VPN subscriptions are sold via your phone and computer's app store, and also by visiting VPN companies' websites.

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Aware Force Cybersecurity News • April 2022 a • Edition #143

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