Monday, December 24, 2012

Resume Writers… It’s virus season!

You have a package so the United States Postal Service decided to send you an e-mail about it. Also, you have a new electronic fax and you don’t even have an e-fax service. Or, my favorite… I’m trapped in <insert country> and I need <insert amount>.

Resume Writers and other small businesses who receive a lot of e-mail tend to be vulnerable to the rising attacks. I know this is picking up because this is my number one question this week.

What are they after?

·         Identify Theft – The golden prize is access to your financials. Technology has made it easy to do banking, investing and purchasing so a carefully placed “sniffer” virus can track use of your credit card or password on unprotected sites.
·         Jump Off’s – Spammers are looking for e-mail addresses to propagate their scheme, scam or virus. They have written worms to crawl through your contact list
·         Validation – Thieves are checking to see if you are home by getting you to respond to e-mail’s. They desire to use valid accounts to do their dirty work.

How they work

·         Viruses attach themselves to programs. Every time you use the program it propagates itself or destroys the operating system.
·         E-mail viruses are after your contact list to further spread destruction.
·         Worms look for vulnerabilities in your wireless network to spread to every computer attached.
·         Trojan Horses are fake software, usually free, that says it will do one thing but does damage.

What to do right now

·         Backup your files – Spend the cash and purchase an external hard drive. Disk space is far less expensive than losing your clients’ resumes.

·         Windows users make a bootable virus scan CD – This enable you to scan your entire computer before the virus has a chance to load.

·         Check websites before you visit them – Google has a Safe Browsing tool that has been around for a few years.

o< Your site name>

o   Example:

·         Report Spam – Forward unwanted or deceptive messages to the Federal Trade Commission at  Be sure to include the complete spam email.

o   Do not call registry / International Spam

Here is my 2012 list of e-mail scams

10. Complaint Report - looks like it’s from Better Business Bureau really from
9. A new Account is Available – from Ameriprise
8. Dating Unread Messages – from
7. Order Inqiury – from various and YES it is misspelled
6. ACH [Miscellaneous number] Transaction Rejected (made me look!)
5. WU urgent action needed – looks like it’s from Western Union really from
4. You have a new fax [24 pages] – looks like it’s from Rapidfax but I cannot determine the source.
3. jConnect Fax [28 pages] – Looks like it’s from the “Fraud department” at the IRS but I cannot determine the source.
2. Confidential to all Employees – Looks like it came from MY company!
1. Wire Released – Looks like it came from Said I had $160K

All of these e-mails had attachments and embedded links that can be catastrophic to your computer. Do not unsubscribe or click on any link unless you are absolutely sure you know the source!

Have a safe Holiday!

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