Security (Part 1): Passwords, Email & Telephone Scams
Are you paying attention? There are a lot of baddies out there after your hard earned money and it’s up to YOU to be safe and secure … nobody’s going to do it for you! However don’t worry too much because they have no idea who you really are; you’re just a number or an email address and all they’re interested in doing is making as much money as possible from you.
Nearly everything needs a password nowadays; your phone, your card PIN, your email and every on-line service you use. You need to make this as secure as possible by mixing up letters, numbers and symbols, and not using common words or names. Try not to make it guessable: Try and be different! Secondly, try and make your email address different from all the others because once a baddie has hacked your email address they can use that to reset other passwords to gain access to your other accounts.
Despite what you hear in the press, you bank account is very secure because banks do not use email to issue your security details … its all done by post, and if you need to reset you login details then it’s a lengthy process. Your bank will NEVER email you or ring you about your passwords.
Now listen carefully … NEVER TELL ANYBODY YOUR PASSWORD!
If your phone rings and someone at the other ends says, “I’m from BT” (or Windows or Microsoft or NatWest or Lloyds Bank), then they’re not. I don’t care how convincing they sound or how terrible your fate will be if you don’t do as they say … NO! NO! NO! … It’s all fraud. If you haven’t initiated the contact in the first place then that call isn’t genuine. Don’t tell then anything, don’t give them access to your computer and don’t ring them back!
Emails next. If you receive an email from any institution asking you to “confirm your details” or telling you that your “account has been blocked”, or any other flimflam for that matter: Just delete it! It isn’t genuine and it certainly hasn’t come from any reputable source. I don’t care how pretty it looks or how dire the consequences … NO! NO! NO! … It’s all fraud. Your bank or other like company will never contact you in this way.
And finally, if you’re still worried or uncertain then call another family member or somebody else you trust and ask advice. Don’t have sleepless nights because these people have no idea who you are or where you live, and any threats they make are hollow. Your two best friends are “hang-up” and “delete”!
Added: 16th November 2015