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Cybersecurity news from NTSC

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He goes by the name "Pierogi." His job is to track down crooks who are scamming people worldwide and expose and embarrass them. His YouTube channel, called Scammer Payback, has millions of followers.

In this exclusive video, he talks about the tactics scammers use and how you can avoid being a victim. And make no mistake, victims think of themselves as smart people. 

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You’ve heard of “phishing” (scam emails), “smishing” (scam texts), and “vishing” (scam voicemails). Now add “quishing” to the list. Malwarebytes says quishing happens when scammers display a malicious QR code in an email or text message that takes victims to realistic-looking websites designed to collect passwords. Be suspicious of QR codes, and always check the web address you're directed to. 


Employees at companies across the U.S. are receiving phishing emails claiming to be from PepsiCo. The message claims Pepsi needs what the recipient’s employer sells and instructs the recipient to submit a price quote for PepsiCo to review. But the messages are from criminals, not Pepsi. Attached to the email is a malicious app that, if installed, gives hackers access to files on the recipient’s computer.


About three out of four adults in the U.S. think there should be more government regulation of how companies protect users’ privacy. Yet Pew Research says that when presented with the choice of approving a website’s privacy policy, most of us click “agree” without reading any of it.

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Temu (Tee-moo) is a popular online shopping megastore offering almost any product you can imagine at very inexpensive prices. In the U.S. alone, 50 million have downloaded the Temu app. Temu is not accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and has a C+ rating there.

Most complaints involve the quality of products and the response from the company when there is an issue. Products on Temu are real but are rarely from familiar brand names. 

Temu (and other e-commerce apps) collect data from you when you create an account and visit the app's home page. 

This data can range from your precise physical location, address, and device ID to your search history, payment information, and contacts.


The Temu app also collects information about birthdays, pictures on the device, links to social media profiles, information about text messages you send, bank info, and Bluetooth and Wi-Fi network information.

Comparitech recommends that if you choose to shop with Temu:


  • Use a new email address that doesn’t include your real name or birthday.

  • Don’t upload a profile photo.

  • Consider using a prepaid card, so you won’t need to provide bank account or PayPal information.

  • Use VPN software when shopping on Temu so the company can’t log the address you're using to access the app.

  • And if you rarely use Temu, consider deleting the app from your phone and computer.


Sources: LinkedIn, Komando, CNBC, Comparitech, Dataconomy.

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“I don't buy things online or use my computer to do my banking. Do I still have to worry about hackers?”


If you’re online at all, you should follow the basic ways to stay safe. Use long passwords (the latest recommendation from experts polled by ZDNet is to use passwords that are at least 12 characters long). And use a separate password for each account. Be skeptical of any urgent email or text requesting a payment, even if the message appears to be genuine. And update the software on your phone or computer whenever recommended.




“What email platforms would you recommend to ensure better privacy? I use Gmail and don't like how my information is used.”


Popular email brands like Gmail, AppleMail, and Outlook are secure and private. Google says it stopped scanning users' messages for advertising purposes several years ago. If you’re interested in using a security-focused email app on your personal computer or smartphone, options to consider include Protonmail, Neo, and SecureMyEmail.




“What is the best antivirus for smartphones?”


Antivirus software is more important on Android phones than on iPhones. First, check to see if anti-virus protection comes pre-installed on your phone, as it is on Samsung devices. Respected anti-virus brands for Android phones include Bitdefender, AVG, and Norton. TotalAV is a free option for Android phones, and Avast offers a free version for iPhones.  

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Cyber cartoon © 2023 Cartoonstock | Original content © 2023 Aware Force LLC

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