Monday, February 3, 2020

Scam Call Centers and Malware

                             

Call Center Scams

Utter lies to foster fear orchestrated by call center scams are costing Canadians millions of dollars.

Think about that for a moment.

Can you imagine how much computer criminals are making on a global scale considering huge losses in Canada?

Three years ago, investigative reporter Kevin Newman trekked to India and came across a massive call center scam targeting Canada. Thousands of Canadians were fooled into thinking they owed money to the Canada Revenue Agency.

While this story does not unravel in the U.S, I find it an invaluable piece of reporting that provides an inside look into how scams generally unravel. No country is immune from it.

This video includes interviews with schemers who were caught, victims, India's law enforcement, and diverse accounts offers an insight into this deceitful trade cleave upon by cold and calculating cyber attackers who stop at nothing to get what they want.

Malware

At one time or another I’m sure most of us stumbled upon mysterious pop-ups when browsing the Internet; or received suspicious emails requesting us to enable macros in order to access a file. 

These vile methods by cyber attackers are laid out to initiate viruses into computers and devices, to spy on person’s online activities, access user passwords, encrypt or erase files, and use victim’s operating systems to attack others. 

Such cyber attacks are referred to as Malware

Malware is the host of many malicious programs such as ransom ware, Trojans, spy ware, and viruses that are contagious and can easily spread to others we communicate via social media, work related emails, and personal emails. Even inserting a corrupted USB device will give rise to an infection. 

Generally, cyber criminals indulge in this broad approach for monetary gain at the expense of those who fall vulnerable. 

Having the best anti-virus software for protection on our computers alone cannot divert Malware. 

Cyber Attackers are always looking for better or easier ways to hack systems despite our safeguards. 

What that means we must also be improving our knowledge and understanding of these threats to decrease our chances of being victimized. 

We can start by being weary of clicking on an infected email attachment, clicking on a bad link, and hooking up an infected USB device. 

But it would best serve us to be mindful of the type of attacks that are current. 

Have you ever wonder how cyber attackers come in possession of log-on credentials of others? 

They do this by way of key logger. 

Key logger is when they access your account and pretend to be you when they are reaching out to your personal or work-related network. Schemers steal this sensitive information by capturing your every keystroke on your computer or hand held device without you knowing it. 

Just imagine all the e-mail or text correspondence you had with your banking institution, credit card companies, student loans, etc. It’s now something cyber attackers can work with. 

With further research of your social media profile and anything else they find online, they can create a profile of you and have the freedom to exploit you financially. 

After organizing a profile of you, they may even sell that information to someone on the dark web and that person will repeat the cycle. 

The possibilities are endless with regard to how they can use sensitive information.

Ransom ware is another form of malware that encrypts and locks users out of their files such as documents, spreadsheets, and photos. Cyber attackers will then demand payment to decrypt the files and make them accessible again. 

Their promise is never guaranteed. 

If this occurs at work, it is best to notify your technical support team to rectify this matter. If it happens on a personal computer, one should reach out to the computer or program help line. 

Another diabolic attack is Spy ware. With spy ware, schemers take control of your microphone or camera and spy on you. All computers can be infected.

The best thing we can do to avoid malware is to keep computers/devices current and updated with the latest workable systems and apps. 

In addition, it is an extra safeguard to install the latest anti-virus software. We can also take extra precautions to ensure we are installing known apps from trusted sites. 

Until next time, stay safe and secure!

Ken



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