October 23, 2018

Did you know?

In the game of cybersecurity, it may not take three strikes before you’re out – it only takes one phishing scam to compromise the security and privacy of your information. Phishing is a type of social engineering attack where a scammer sends fraudulent digital messages intending to manipulate you into revealing personal or protected information, or hoping to gain unauthorized access to a system through a download or link. A particularly nefarious variety is spear phishing, where scammers pretend to be a known or trusted sender (such as a company executive) in order to trick you into becoming a victim. Phishing attacks are extremely profitable for perpetrators, and the average attack on a mid-sized company costs $1.6 million in losses and cleanup.

Don’t fall for the curve ball – it’s easy to lose your information to phishing scams.

What can I do?

Want to hit a home run and knock phishing out of the park? Here are four simple steps you can take.

  1. Avoid a foul and get on first base – stay suspicious of messages that don’t look right. Pay close attention to details like spelling, grammar, punctuation, capitalization, or a sense of urgency telling you to do something RIGHT NOW. However, perpetrators are getting more sophisticated all the time, so you can’t be too skeptical of any message.
  2. Get in scoring position by stealing second base – don’t reply to suspicious emails or click any links in them. This is a quick way to avoid installing ransomware or other malicious software on your device.
  3. Hit the elusive triple and get to third base – forward the email to report.phishing@valpo.edu. This is a NEW address and will automatically notify the appropriate IT staff, so we can investigate and follow up with you more quickly.
  4. Wanna hit a home run? Do all of the above, AND mark the suspicious message as spam/phishing in Gmail: click the down arrow, select “report as spam” or “report as phishing.” What’s the benefit? Gmail’s system will “learn” and filter the message out of other people’s inboxes, helping to protect them from falling victim.

By staying alert to suspicious messages and reporting them to us, you’ll be doing your part to help protect Valpo’s technology infrastructure from being compromised.

#CyberAware month may be almost over, but we’ll still continue sharing helpful information, tips, and resources whenever we have the opportunity. You can still partner with us in making the internet a safer place for everyone! Here are a few easy ways to be involved.

  1. Get a free sticker from the Help Desk to show your support.
  2. Join the #CyberAware conversation on social media.
    1. Facebook.com/itatvalpo
    2. Twitter.com/itatvalpo
    3. NEW! Instagram.com/itatvalpo
  3. Request a cyber security workshop customized for your department or organization, anytime during the year. Submit an ITicket via the Help Desk to get started.

Got questions?

Contact us through social media or the Help Desk so we can partner with you. https://helpdesk.valpo.edu, helpdesk@valpo.edu, 219.464.5678