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Cybersecurity news from NTSC.

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Nearly 12 billion spam text messages are sent every day —

up 30% from a year ago, says the New York Times.

This new video has pointers about identifying fake texts.

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Amazon is suing 11,000 independent sellers for posting fake positive reviews of their products on amazon.com. Some are accused of offering free products or gift cards to buyers in exchange for 5-star ratings. The Wall Street Journal says buyers should read 1-star product reviews for feedback. Another tactic is to sort reviews by date because recent posts may be more accurate. And check the seller’s refund policy before buying. If you’re dissatisfied with a purchase made through Amazon, leave a review.

 

By the way, here's news about unwanted text messages. Vox says major telecom companies in the US are putting a new policy in place that charges higher fees and slows distribution for any organization that sends more than 3,000 text messages a day — unless recipients have opted in to receive the messages. The rule covers political campaigns, business, and non-profit organizations.

 

In the past three months, the brand name most often used in fake phishing emails was LinkedIn. Check Point says many fake LinkedIn emails say, “You appeared in 8 searches this week” or “I’d like to do business with you.” Fake emails claiming to be from Microsoft, designed to steal passwords, are on the rise. Be suspicious of messages like “Verify your Outlook account now.”

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"How can I find out where a link in an email will actually take me?"

> The link that appears in an email message can display one thing but then take you somewhere else when you click on it. But you can outsmart a scammer. Position your cursor over the link without clicking on it, and you'll see the actual web address it leads to in a small pop-up window or at the bottom of the browser. With text messages, if you don't recognize the sender's name, delete the message without clicking on it. 

"Aren’t password managers at risk of being hacked, thereby giving away all our passwords at once?"

> Well, several well-known brands of password managers have been hacked in the past. But as the cybersecurity website allthingssecured.com puts it, "using them is better than not using them." Password managers add a valuable layer of security that most of us aren't committed enough to manage on our own.

"How can I suppress or prevent my personal information from appearing on "people finder" sites? I looked at a couple of these sites and see that much of my information (previous addresses, relatives' names, etc.) is on these sites."

> The amount of personal information on those websites is shocking. Some of it comes from public records. Other data, like salaries, is speculative and often inaccurate. To reduce the amount of information about you for sale, begin by searching for "delete my personal information from Google." Delete online shopping accounts you don't use, make sure social media accounts like Facebook are set to "private," and select "Do not track" when an app asks permission to share your information. Paid services like DeleteMe and ForgetMe are designed to remove personal data from websites that track and sell it.

Do you have a cybersecurity question?
Let us know!

Aware Force Cybersecurity News • August 2022 a • Edition #150

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