In the world of cyber crime, humans are the easiest target. Why? We can be arrogant and our hubris mixed with a healthy dose of curiosity and a bit of cluelessness (and sometimes greed) is often all that is needed to keep the cyber crime cycle in motion.
But as we’ve said before- knowledge is power. Here are a few cyber crime tricks you can’t afford to ignore.
Ad Banner Trickery
I’m sure you’ve noticed the duck and zombie shooting games that pop up while you’re surfing the web. They typically show up in ad-banners on websites. They may even cause you to really want ot smack that roach. However, by clicking on these games you run the risk of infecting your workplace systems. These games are one of the most common methods that the cyber criminals are using in order to get in.
Lost USB Stick
Maybe you’re walking back from lunch and you happen to look down and notice a USB stick in the parking lot. Curiosity and the desire to find the proper owner take over and you stick that USB stick into your computer. Congrats, that USB stick was loaded with malware that is now auto running in your computer and is picking up important information like logins in order to hack the system.
Do NOT take IT advice from someone you do not know. PwC has stated that hackers are calling victims and posing as IT experts. They then get the victim to install malicious software, unbeknown to them. This is actually happening. So unless it is the IT guy that has been with the company for a number of years, then it is best to not listen.
Phishing is still alive and well. I’m sure we’ve all gotten those emails from the “prince” in Nigeria. However, this time the phishing scam is in the form of meeting minutes. This email comes across maybe a half hour after a meeting. The so-called updated attachment is in reality a malicious attachment that contains a virus. Verify with the powers that be before opening that email. It may be look official and convincing (like an email from a government agency) but that link is to a bogus site so be wary of unsolicited emails and links (and study grammar- most spammy emails contain grammatical errors).
Many hackers are still choosing to use some old school methods. They may use a battery powered box that is able to operate for a week. This box contains a system which picks up on wireless networks. So that said box may sit unnoticed in the mailroom before anyone notices and by the time it is noticed? It’s too late as it has been gathering information for long enough to do some damage. Here is some great information about ATM and keypad skimmers.
Cybercriminals also use Zbot malware in order to hide their malware in pictures. So while you think you are looking at a totally innocent picture of a cat, you are opening and downloading malware that when activated after visiting your bank is able to steal your user login.
The last cyber trick that is being used is by sending fake CV and resume attachments. What better way to have a company open the attachment than to scour job boards online and email the fake attachment. The target is none the wiser after opening these attachments.
Know the methods. Be aware. Protect yourself. Backup your data regularly. Keep all software up to date for increased security. Most of all, don’t think that it can’t happen to you.