The beginning of a new school year is here and millions of kids across the country are returning back to classes. As a result, the beginning of the new school year can often fall victim to cybersecurity threats. In order to stay safe and ensure you or your children's information does not become compromised, here are some tips to make sure the return to school is worry free.
1. You don’t recognize the email address, or you know the person, but the email seems very out-of-character.
2. The email appears to come from a well-known company but is slightly altered or suspicious (www.micorsoft-support.com or www.bankofarnerica.com).
3. The email was sent to you at an unusual time, such as 2am.
4. The email contains attachments – even ones that look okay, like Word docs or PDFs.
5. The email begins with a vague salutation or seems very sales-y.\
6. There are misspellings or incorrect grammar in the subject line or in the body of the email.
7. The company has threatened to block your account permanently, report you to authorities, or is offering you something of value.
8. There are links in the body of the email.
Sometimes the link appears with other text, while others it is the only thing that appears in the email.
9. URLs that appear differently when you hover over the link.
Sometimes it’ll be just one different character. Be careful not to click on them!
10. The email contains a logo from the same popular company, possibly embedded with a link that would take you to a scam site or download a virus.
Yes, there are phishing phone calls too. They may operate in a similar fashion – trying to sell you a software license or threatening you until you provide them a username and password or other account information.
Fake Friend Requests
Due to the popularity of online learning in the past few years, teachers are relying more on group chats to connect all of their students together or for parents to stay informed with their children's work. With this being said, be aware of the people you are accepting who send you requests. Do your research and make sure they are a part of the class whether they are a student or a parent. It is never a bad idea to wait to accept the request until you have met them.
Prepare Your Children
Kids are never too young to become informed of the warning signs of a cyberattack. With so much of our lives connected through technology, it is important to teach our kids what the warning signs are of an attack, and what to do if they feel like they have fallen victim. Make sure every member of your family knows how to enable their security features – be it Face ID, or a strong password. Cybersecurity Awareness is crucial.
Keep Your Devices Up to Date
Not only does updating your devices allow your systems to run faster but downloading important security updates that are released on a regular basis will keep your system safe from exposing itself to problems. Make sure you or your child's operating system on their computer is the latest version and constantly check your browsers from updates as well.
At Apogee IT Services we make sure you and your information are always safe. Here's to a great 2022-2023 school year!