SAFEGUARD YOUR EMAIL
Email is often a vehicle used to transmit malware and commit fraud. It is important to evaluate your email behaviors and develop good habits to help protect yourself. The tips below provide basic information on how you can keep your computer and your identity safe.
- Never open or respond to SPAM (unsolicited bulk email messages).
- Delete all spam without opening it. Responding to spam only confirms your email address to the spammer, which can actually intensify the problem.
- Never click on links within an email
- It is safer to retype the Web address than to click on it from within the body of the email
- Don’t open attachments from strangers
- If you do not know the sender or you are not expecting the attachment, delete it without opening it.
- Don’t open attachment with odd file name extensions.
- Most computer files use file name extensions such as “.doc” for documents or “.jpg” for images. If a file has a double extension, like “heythere.doc.pif,” it is highly likely that is a dangerous file and should never be opened. In addition, do not open email attachments that have files endings of “.exe, .pif or .vbs”. These are file name extensions for executable files and could be dangerous if opened.
- Never give out your email address or other sensitive personal information to unknown Web sites.
- If you don’t know the reputation of a Web site, do not assume you can trust it. Many Web sites sell email address or may be careless with your personal information. Be wary of providing any information that could be used by others for fraudulent purposes.
- Never provide sensitive information in email
- Forged emails purporting to be from your financial institution or favorite online store is a popular trick used by criminals to extract personal information for fraud. Never send personal information by way of email.