3 Steps to Take Care of Mom This Mother’s Day

momIt seems like every week you hear about a new internet-based scam or virus making the rounds, and it’s important to be diligent about protecting your personal information.

For the most part, you know how to identify a scammer, but what happens when someone gets your mom on the phone and convinces her that she needs computer help?

This Mother’s Day, take care of your mom and fill her in on these three important tips to protect the family computer.

Just Hang Up
Recently, my mother-in-law received a call from someone claiming to be a Microsoft employee. The person on the other end of the phone said they were calling because she had an issue with her computer that they wanted to solve for her.

My mother-in-law stayed on the phone with them as they walked her through a process that basically gave them access to all the data on her computer for 24 hours.

Not only that, but they actually charged her for the “service” of stealing her data. My poor mother-in-law just didn’t know any better, and neither do a lot of mothers across the country.

Many people are falling prey to this sort of scam because they just aren’t aware that they need to be guarded, even at home.

Tell you mom that a good rule of thumb is that anyone who calls the house unsolicited offering help is up to no good. Microsoft will never call you out of the blue to help “resolve” an issue – I promise, they’re not managing your computer from their big office in Washington!

Question the Sender
These days, hackers love to infiltrate personal email addresses and send virus-infected links to their contacts with a subject line that says something like, “You gotta see this!”

When the person clicks on the link in the email, it may ask them to enter sensitive personal information or just automatically download a virus onto their computer.

This scam is tricky because it looks like the email is coming from a friend or relative. Tell Mom that if something looks suspicious or seems uncharacteristic for that sender, she should NOT click on the link.

Beware of Bundled Software
First of all, let me say that if the term “bundled software” sounds confusing or doesn’t make sense to you, you shouldn’t be downloading or installing anything on your computer!

If you do choose to download software from the internet, beware of the bundle. You want one program, but it comes with “free” additional options that will collect data from your computer and send it somewhere else that you don’t want it to go.

This is especially true of free downloads from websites like Cnet.

This Mother’s Day, share these tips with your mom so she doesn’t get caught in a pinch. If you want to feel more secure with your personal and professional technical equipment, give us a call at 310-499-4929 or email us to set up a free consultation.

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