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Online and Computer Scams - Prevent problems

Prevent problems

1. Protect your devices

Password protect your devices. On your cellphone, lock the keypad when you're not using it. 

Have software installed on your devices to prevent spam (email that is not wanted), viruses (harmful computer programs), and spyware. Keep that software up-to-date. 

2. Be cautious using email

When using email, never click on a link in an email, even to log in to well-known sites such as Facebook or Twitter. Go to the site directly and log in there. 

Don’t open an attachment in an email sent by someone you don’t know. 

3. Be cautious online

Don’t click on links unless you trust the site you’re on. 

Don’t download files or applications unless you can verify the source. Never give personal information to “unlock” a feature or application. 

When you’re using social media services such as Facebook or Twitter, be alert for scammers posing as a friend. They may share something with you, trying to trick you into clicking on a link to a malicious site. 

Be aware that wireless networks in public places such as coffee shops, libraries and airports are not secure. When using a public wireless network, never send personal information or visit sites that require a password (such as online banking). 

4. Erase information

Make sure your information is completely erased before you sell, recycle or discard your computer or cellphone. This involves more than deleting everything. To make sure that your private information is gone forever, you need to “wipe the hard drive” using special software. You can buy this software or have a professional do this for you.