Beware of Fake Online Advertisements – Warns Internet Crime Complaint Center

Fake Online Advertisements

The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) released a Scam Alert regarding fraudulent ads for normally expensive items, such as cars and boats, at discounted prices. With the increase in online shoppers, the techniques used by scammers to fraud them have also improved. Hackers make use of various methods such as fake deals, fake discounts emails including malicious link, bogus discounted coupons, etc. to gain personal information of the consumers and cause them financial damage.

These scammers often create legitimate looking fake website and offer exciting discounts. Online shoppers become victims by clicking on the advertisement and providing their personal details to these scammers.

Online shoppers are encouraged to review the IC3 Scam Alert for details, refer to the Avoiding Social Engineering and Phishing Attacks Cyber Security Tip for information on social engineering attacks, and refer to the Shopping Safely Online Cyber Security Tip for information on online shopping safety.

Moreover, eScan recommends the below tips for safe online shopping experience.

  • Use trustworthy anti-virus software for your computer and keep your computer’s security software up-to-date.
  • Look for signs of encryption, starting from web address with https, wherein “s” stands for secure.
  • Research well about the website before purchasing anything. If you come across any discount offer on that site, check its authenticity and then avail the offer.
  • Online shoppers should always visit the official website by typing its URL or address in the Web browser address bar. Be cautious if you see a broken key or an open padlock symbol in your Internet browser.
  • Check the privacy policy of the website you plan to purchase from. Ensure that they have a privacy policy, so that your data is protected and the website owner do not sell or rent your information to third parties.
  • We may receive emails from unknown sender; never click on the links embedded within an unsolicited e-mail.

Often you may receive emails offering amazing discounts, but to get the benefit of that discount you are asked to provide your banking credentials or your card number. Be extra cautious and never provide your banking information or other details through email.

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Security Risks On Social Networking Sites

social-media-security-riskFacebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn and other social networks have increased at astonishing levels and they have become a vital part for our online lives. There are many advantages of these sites which include connecting with friends and family, searching jobs, increasing sales revenue, informing people about a brand or idea and much more. However, along with so many benefits there are also information security and privacy concerns associated with it. The amount and accessibility of personal data offered on these sites have attracted cybercriminals who seek to exploit this information.

The more information a user posts, the more information becomes available for others online including cybercriminals. They can easily use this information for hosting spear phishing attacks, spoofing, and web application attacks with an aim to steal a person’s identity. In this case a user may unknowingly be providing an easy channel for identity theft. Hence, a user should be wary about how much personal information he/she post online on these social networking sites.

Security issues associated with social networking sites are basically behavioral issues and not really technical ones. Users, who post a lot of private or sensitive information about themselves, are at a higher risk of getting themselves attacked by cybercriminals. Moreover, information such as phone number, financial details, or sensitive business data should not be published online. Additionally, posting photos or videos could also lead to data breach.

However, often due to technical issues such as hacking of a site also results in leakage of usernames and passwords of account holders, which ultimately leads to data loss and identity theft. Additionally, Spyware, Keylogger, Password cracker and Kazy Trojan via Adware infects the computer through social media sites. Users unknowingly click on malicious advertisements and invite malware on their devices. Hence, users must be extra cautious before clicking on any link or advertisements on social media sites.

Overall, social media causes serious security and privacy concerns that must be taken care of so that users are protected against various cyber security threats.

eScan recommends below tips for a safe and enjoyable social networking experience:

  • Get reliable security software: Update your system with the latest antivirus software such as eScan that provides enhanced protection against online threats.
  • Have a strong online password: Combine capital and lowercase letters with numbers and symbols to create a strong password.
  • Have different passwords for different accounts: Different passwords helps keep you safe from cybercriminals.
  • Avoid clicking on any pop-up: Especially pop-ups which get displayed on unknown websites.
  • Think before you post: What you post online stays online. Think twice before posting anything online. Recent research stated that 70% of job recruiters rejected candidates based on information they found online.
  • Keep personal data personal: Be careful about the personal data you provide on social networking sites. Too much personal data online can be harmful.

Use eScan Total Security Suite with Cloud Security for Home and Small Office Edition that provides safe computing environment to your family when using the internet, making transactions, shopping online, or even social networking.

Get the free trial of eScan Total Security Suite with Cloud Security from here:

Also to ensure secure social networking experience on your smartphone, use the free trial of eScan Mobile Security for Android. Click here

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China Calls For Strict Internet Security

Chinese official called for protecting Internet security

Keeping in mind all the internet security issues, Chinese officials, at the World Internet Conference in Wuzhen called for protecting Internet security and setting controls on the Internet. China, which has the world’s most sophisticated online censorship system, specified in the conference that they will not loosen their tight grip on the internet.

It currently blocks many social media services, such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat and Google, along with many rights groups sites and some foreign media agencies as well. Moreover, the social media giant such as Bejing also blocks some western media websites including the New York Times, and search engine Google among others.

The attendees of the conference included executives from Apple Inc, Facebook Inc, LinkedIn Corp, IBM Corp, Microsoft Corp, Qualcomm Inc, SoftBank Corp, Cisco Systems Inc, Inc, Nokia, Intel Corp and Thomson Reuters Corp.

Ma Kai, vice-premier of China’s State Council said, “Internet security is the common challenge faced by human society today and it is the common responsibility of all governments to effectively respond on this issue “. “All countries should strengthen cooperation and fully respect the different concerns that each nation has towards Internet security, crack down on Internet crimes, severely deal with Internet terrorism activities and work together against cyber-attacks.”

Although, in the past, China and the United States accused each other of the state-sponsored cyber-spying, China clearly stated that internet security is a major concern faced by all the nations in the world and governments of all the nations should take responsibility of dealing with internet crimes and together work against cyber-attacks.

At the end, he said “China has a population of over 1.3 billion and an Internet population of over 600 million and everyone can find a market here and seize business opportunities.”

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US State Department Unclassified Email System Hacked

US State Department Unclassified Email System Hacked

After White House computer network breach, now there is yet another government agency computer network that has been targeted by an apparent hack attack. Reportedly, computers at the U.S. State Department have been hacked, and its entire unclassified e-mail system has been shut down to make security upgrades and repair possible damage caused by the hacker attack.

However, according to a senior department official, none of the department’s classified email system was affected by the suspected breach. He said to the tech news site NextGov “The department recently detected activity of concern in portions of its unclassified email system”, “There was no compromise of any of the department’s classified systems.”

The State Department said that it had shut down the email system to schedule outage of some of its internet-linked systems to make security improvements to its main unclassified computer network. Reports suggested that the State Department would address the shutdown as soon as the security arrangements are completed.

So far, a number of government agencies, including the White House unclassified computer network, the National Weather Service, and the US Postal Service, have reported similar cyber-attacks.

Moreover, we can only conclude that government computer systems are especially vulnerable to internet attacks; hence, it must deploy effective security technologies to ensure complete data protection from external threats.

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