Avoid malicious links & downloads
Hackers may imitate major news outlets to spread dangerous links, and get you to carelessly click. Here are things to look for before you click.
- Shocking headlines to links that appear randomly. (ex. “You won’t believe what they just discovered on Mars!”) If you want to know about a certain topic, search on your own terms.
- Strange usernames or questionable account pictures.
- The “too good to be true” statements. (ex. “Click here and you can win 1 million dollars!”)
Don’t always download
- Clicking on unknown downloads may take you to a website that infects your computer with a “malware” or “virus.”
- The virus could capture everything you type into your computer including passwords or credit card numbers.
If you find yourself questioning, don’t click!
Hackers use every trick in the book. They send out links that lead to malicious sites in hopes that you will click and fill in the personal information.
- Trick you into giving personal information such as account passwords and social security numbers in hopes to steal your identity.
- Trick you into installing software that will give them control over your computer.
- Trick you into sending them money
What to do if you click
Unfortunately, there are times when our fingers click faster than our brains tell us not to. In these cases, it is important to know what steps to take next.
- Disconnect your device from the Internet by unplugging the Internet cable.
- Back up all your files.
- Have your computer checked for malware either by a professional or do it yourself if capable.
- Change your online usernames and passwords.
- Set up a Fraud Alert.