The 2011 scammer-trend: Phishing emails

Don´t be fooled by scammers. Hear what happened to one of our customers when she received a phishing email from a man requesting counseling and a health check-up.

You have probably heard about the so called phishing emails, were scammers try to “fish” money out of innocent people´s accounts approaching them via more or less trustworthy looking emails. In 2011 this trend increased significantly making it one of the most common security threats for PC users.

One of MYSecurityCenter´s customers, practitioner Rumana Zahn wrote us an email telling about her experience with scammers pretending to be interested in two weeks of yoga retreat, checkups and counseling for a group of ten people.

Rumana Zahn took the request seriously to begin with, she almost followed through, but luckily she got suspicious. The scammers asked her if they could pay her for full fee including their interpreter´s fee which meant that she should pay their interpreter directly. The trick consisted in the fact that the fraudsters would pay over the net with a stolen credit card. Out of the 7,000 euros they would transfer, she could keep her fee of 2,000 and the rest she would transfer by bank to their translator, which of course was part of the scammer team. That way she would participate in laundering stolen money, which is illegal. She was repeatedly asked whether she accepted credit card payment, but since she had no possibility of accepting this form of payment, she asked the fraudsters to make a bank transfer. She began to get suspicious when she received a second email in which he repeated his questions about credit card payment.

“I began to suspect the whole thing being a hoax, although I actually thought that the approach initially sounded serious. I guess it would have meant me having to be liable. Very clever indeed”, Rumana Zahn says. She asked them to pay by bank transfer or PayPal but she never received an answer.

“Since then I get an email like this twice a year – it’s very similar – a group coming, please arrange. Another friend of mine got the same email two years ago”.

Rumana Zahn is just one of many people who have been attacked by scammers sending out fake emails. Read this newsletter´s Tips and Tricks on what to keep in mind when a phishing email hits you in 2012.

Thanks to Rumana Zahn for telling us her story.
See one of the original phishing emails below.

From: johnsonwilliams400 [mailto:johnsonwilliams400@gmail.com]
Sent: Wed 02 November 2011 15:21
To: j.williams2000@rocketmail.com
Subject: Inquiry

Greetings,

I want to book for 2 weeks checkups and counseling, 1 or 2 hours each
day Monday to Friday (morning or evening hours) for a group of 10. We
will be coming for a one month vacation/holiday from 29th Nov 2011 and
in line with our plans we will require 2 weeks Natural Therapy to help
maintain healthy body due to the nature of our job and also to make
our stay fun. The checkups and counseling should basically be on
Naturopathic consultations or any other Natural Therapy you can offer.

Please let me know if your clinic can handle this for us and get back
to me with requirements to enable me contact you with more
clarifications. Also confirm if you can arrange a one on one checkups
and counseling for us or if its better in group.

Awaits your email.

John Williams

Tips and Tricks

 

Avoid falling for phishing-emails!

 

• Do not reply on emails or pop-ups asking for personal or financial information.

 

• If you are not sure about the reliance of the email, check up on the contact information. Open a new internet browser session and type in the company´s web address yourself. Don´t click on any links in the email and don’t copy and paste the link from the message, it could be a fake link.

 

• Check that the name in the website from the email is not changed slightly. For instance spelling Microsoft as Microsofts or Mircosoft.

 

• Make sure your antivirus, antispyware and firewall are updated. Antivirus software scans incoming communications for troublesome files and warns you before you download harmful files. A firewall helps make you invisible on the Internet and blocks all communications from unauthorized sources.

 

• If the email contains errors, spelling mistakes or if the text simply does not sound good, stay away!

 

• Check that the sender of the email is the same as the company stated to be behind the email.

 

• Don’t email personal or financial information. Email is not a secure communication method. Normally proper companies as your bank would never ask you to email them your passwords or credit card number.

 

• Review your bank account or credit card statements every week. That gives you time to react on any unauthorized payment or transactions. If you see something suspicious, contact your bank immediately.

 

• Report spam and phishing-emails to FBI via Internet Fraud Complaint Center on www.ifcbi.gov. They collaborate with the authorities worldwide about closing down the phishing-websites and identifying the scammers behind. You can also report it to Anti-Phishing Working Group (an e-commerce-community) on reportphishing@antiphishing.org.

 

Worst passwords in 2011 – is yours one of them?

 

We all know that having a strong and difficult to guess password is important. However, a recent report from SplashData on the 25 most common passwords in 2011 shows that internet users still go for hackable and easy to remember passwords. The list is generated from millions of stolen passwords posted online by hackers.

 

Take a look and see if your password is on the list. To create a strong one, we recommend both upper and lower case letters combined with numbers and symbols. Sometimes it is easier to remember whole sentences like my_dog_is_sweet1 or house_on_fire! instead of singular words.
Remember also to change your passwords regularly.

 

1. password
2. 123456
3. 12345678
4. qwerty
5. abc123
6. monkey
7. 1234567
8. letmein
9. trustno1
10. dragon
11. baseball
12. 111111
13. iloveyou
14. master
15. sunshine
16. ashley
17. bailey
18. passw0rd
19. shadow
20. 123123
21. 654321
22. superman
23. qazwsx
24. michael
25. football

 

Our sister company had its app recommended on Danish TV

 

Last week our sister company has its app MYAndroidProtection recommended on Danish live TV. The highly acknowleged gadget expert David Guldager was very positive about our app, giving it the best score 9 out of 10 stars among the four antivirus apps he reviewed (F-Secure, VirusBarrier and MYAndroidProtection).

Have a look:

http://go.tv2.dk/morgentv/id-45912676.html

 

Our Newsletter informing you about hacking is available now!

 

MYSecurityCenter and  MYMobileSecurity will be sending out newsletters every two months. Our November issue, which is about hacking on PC´s and smartphones, was released earlier this week. You can, amongst other things, read about:

 

World´s most famous hackers
New hacker trick: Hang up if Microsoft is calling you
Be aware of hackers like Lisbeth Salander

Phone hacking caused media scandal to roll

Tips & Tricks: How to prevent hacking?

 

To read more please click on the newsletter below.

Enjoy!

newsletter_image

Read our latest newsletter - click here

R.I.P. Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs death is headline news in all the media around the world today. His innovative way of thinking and willingness to take chances made Apple the most successful IT-company in the world. “He was a great inspiration for me and for the whole IT-industry”, says CEO of MYSecurityCenter Janus R. Nielsen. “The big question is now: will Apple survive without him? I look forward to seeing how Tim Cook will take leadership of Apple, and which stragegies the company will hold on to to ensure continuous growth and success”.

Top Nordic Android Magazine gives MYMobileSecurity top marks for being one of the best mobile security providers in the market




Are you protected?

The enormous and fast growing success of MYMobileSecurity and the team behind it is beginning to get noticed thanks to the fantastic article published recently in the top Nordic magazine, Android.

MYMobileSecurity is today amongst the leaders in the Mobile security industry and with partners and customers like Samsung, LG, Orange, Z, Vodafone, Telefonica, Verizon, TELE2, Tesco and many more it has very fast become an established leader in the ever so rapidly growing Mobile security industry. The technology behind MYMobileSecurity is used today by more than 60 million customers worldwide and they cover all major platforms, like Android, Windows Mobile, and Symbian.

The owners of the company, Danish Janus Nielsen and Swedish Kevin Freij are behind the huge success and the release of the article is of course extremely well-timed with the upcoming Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

The article centres on the attack of Mobile viruses and the susceptibility to hacking that is indeed becoming a fast growing problem and many people haven’t yet given thought to protecting their smartphone in the way they would protect their PC – but why not? There is a fast growing number of people who are now using their smartphones and tablets to do all the things they were doing on their PCs including entering extremely sensitive information like passwords and banking information over Wi-Fi networks. MYAndroid Protection is a fully featured and comprehensive protection package providing Antivirus & Malware protection, Real-time monitor, Backup & Data recovery, Protection against theft & losses as well as Credit Card & identity theft protection. It scans the whole phone and not just the applications. Access to data, locking down and blocking of your stolen or lost device is simply done by sending a text message with a code from another phone. The application is available free for a trial period of 30 days and includes automatic updates and full customer support. It’s also available in Danish!

In the Spring, the company hope to have other security products available in Danish too: MYMobile Bodyguard, MYMobile KidsProtection and MYMobile TuneUp.

www.mymobilesecurity.com

To read the article in English please click here:
http://download.mymobilesecurity.com/press/en/android-magazine-product-review-and-article.pdf

To read the original article in Danish please click here:
http://download.mymobilesecurity.com/press/da/android-magazine-product-review-and-article.pdf

Mobile World Congress (MWC) 14-17 February in Barcelona




The must-attend annual gathering of the mobile industry – The Mobile World Congress (MWC) – opens its doors in Barcelona on February 14th. The mobile ecosystem is in the midst of an unprecedented wave of transformation. As business models adapt, new verticals and players emerge. Technology evolves, perceptions shift and lives are improved. At the MWC, its 365,000m2 of floor space will contain 50,000 senior mobile leaders from 200 countries, so there will be plenty of items on the agenda for the week to keep its visitors busy. The CEOs from both MYSecurityCenter and MYMobileSecurity will be there presenting their new products MYMobile Protection, MYAndroid Protection and MYMobile Bodyguard. In addition the aim is to find out first hand what’s new in the Mobile Market and also to see what some of the big telecom companies will be unveiling of course. This is undoubtedly the best venue for mobile industry networking, finding business opportunities and making deals.

If you will be going to the Congress in Barcelona and wish to meet us there, please do not hesitate to drop us a line: sam@mysecuritycenter.com

Together, we are leading the transformation!

www.mysecuritycenter.com

www.mymobilesecurity.com

Safer Internet Day 8th February 2011

Click here to watch video: Cyber-Bullying

“It’s more than a game, it’s your life”

MYSecurityCenter is supporting Safer Internet Day on February 8th 2011.  This is organised by INSAFE (www.saferinternet.org) to promote safer and more responsible use of online  technology and mobile phones, especially amongst children and young people across the world. Each year hundreds of events are organised to raise awareness about online safety issues. From cyber-bullying to social networking, each year Insafe aims to be at the forefront of emerging online issues and chooses a topic reflecting current concerns. This year, they ask us to look more closely at our “virtual lives” and discover how our real self lives the virtual experience.

This year, efforts will focus on virtual lives. Today young people spend a good part of their lives on activities ranging from online gaming to social networking. In doing so they face multiple challenges related to their privacy, reputation and health.

A few key facts to contemplate!

  • Gamers spend on average 8 hours weekly playing online.
  • Young people sleep 2 to 3 hours less per night than 10 years ago.
  • In January 2010, 18 million accounts were registered on Second Life.
  • Facebook reports more than 500 million active users.
  • Users spend 700 billion minutes on Facebook each month.
  • 13 million players in World of Warcraft, world’s largest MMORPG.

MMORPGs generated $1.5 billion in subscription revenues worldwide in 2008, forecast to reach $2.5 billion by 2012.

  • Up to 250,000 players are simultaneously online on WoW.
  • Transactions and sales of virtual goods in virtual worlds were estimated at $18 billion in 2009.

Some key messages

  • Hiding behind your avatar, pseudo or profile page will not shield you.
  • Your actions in your virtual life can impact on your real life.
  • Monitor your playing activities: a balance between online and offline is important.
  • Look for virtual worlds that don’t encourage consumerism.

Stay safe online, both on your PC and on your smartphone.  Download our antivirus software to keep safe and protect your identity . https://secure1.mysecuritycenter.com/gb/en/msc/eshop/product-info/my-internet-security-gold/base

More information on our rang products can be found at www.mysecuritycenter.com and more information on Safer Internet Day at www.saferinternetday.org

Microsoft warning over browser security flaw

 

Microsoft has issued a “critical” warning over a newly-discovered flaw in Windows. The bug affects every version of Microsoft’s Windows system. In a security advisory, the company warned of a loophole that could be used by malicious hackers to steal private information or hijack computers. The bug potentially affects every user of the Internet Explorer web browser – around 900 million people worldwide. Microsoft has issued a software patch to defend against attacks, and said it was working to develop a long-term fix.

Although the flaw is actually inside Windows itself, it only appears to affect the way that Internet Explorer handles some web pages and documents. Microsoft admitted that the problem meant users could easily be fooled into downloading malicious files by doing something as simple as clicking on a web link. Once the computer had been hijacked, hackers could use it to steal personal data or send users to fake websites, she added.

Although Microsoft said it had seen no evidence that the glitch had already been exploited by hackers, it warned that research had shown it was a serious threat and have issued a “fix it” security patch to protect users while they are developing a more permanent solution.

We recommend you to protect your computer with MYSecurityCenter products.