If you have received emails that you suspect are phishing attempts you can report them to the National Cyber Security Centre, part of GCHQ, using the email firstname.lastname@example.org
With many of us working from home in the current crisis there is an ever-present threat from online scams and phishing attacks. The level of attacks hasn’t necessarily increased but they have definitely become more targeted towards Covid-19.
As the Minister for Security, James Brokenshire pointed out “Criminals are seeking to exploit our greater use of emails, video conferencing and other technologies for their advantage,”. Sad as it is that there are some who would seek to exploit the current crisis for their own malicious gain, we don’t have to fight these people on our own.
In response, the government cyber security agency has launched a ‘world-leading’ scam reporting initiative or Suspicious Email Reporting Service (SERS not SARS!), to help people report suspicious emails and get malicious content taken down.
This is alongside a ‘cyber aware’ campaign to promote cyber security best practices – stuff we’ve been banging on about for ages! – to protect the nation.
This includes things like having strong and unique passwords, particularly for email, using a password manager, backing up your data and updating your device.
Covid-19 scams that people may come across are fake shops selling fraudulent coronavirus related items, malware distribution sites, advance-fee frauds and phishing sites, designed to steal personal information and data.
We’ve talked about phishing before [Link] but as a quick recap here’s what to look out for: suspicious emails that claim to be from the company you work for, the government or other authoritative body such as the World Health Organisation (WHO) or simply from companies or individuals that you don’t normally receive information from.
Particularly when financial aid is being offered by the government and information about it is being shared all over the internet it pays to be extra careful about what links you click on. Something that seems too good to be true, probably is.
Obviously best practice for all this is to make sure you have good anti-virus software [link] and spam filters on your email, particularly if you are now not using company PC’s.
The Suspicious Email Reporting Service, which has been co-developed by City of London police, is an automated service that will analyse reported emails to see if they include any malicious links. If this is found to be the case these sites will be immediately shutdown.
It also provides the service with real time data to track and prevent phishing attacks and identify new patterns of offending behaviour so they are more well equipped in the future.
As a result of this initiative, at the end of April, 395 phishing sites had been removed from the internet within a week of them being online. [Link] This is great news and it’s comforting to know there is a service out there which is seeking to disrupt the attempts of hackers and keep people safe online.
August 20, 2020
Technology is always changing. Just when you thought we’d gone as far as we can go, something else pops out of the woodwork (figuratively speaking). In this post we’ve rounded up a few of the big things on the horizon in tech and IT. Although...
August 19, 2020
You’ve probably heard the term VPN bandied around quite a lot recently. With many people working from home at the moment they are becoming increasingly commonplace particularly for employees working remotely. But why is that and what does VPN stand for? A Very Personal Number?...
August 12, 2020
Computers… They’re everywhere… in case you hadn’t noticed. Seeing as they are central to pretty much every aspect of work and business it might seem pretty clear to you why IT support is needed. But is it? Do you actually know why your business needs...
July 02, 2020
What is an SSL certificate and how do I know if I’ve got one? In this post: - The difference between http and https. - An SSL certificate ensures your connection is secure. - Having an SSL is good for user trust and SEO. Have...