E-mail Subject: You have received a message from the U.S. Postal Service

Message for the US Postal Service

The Postal Service does have a message, but it’s not in that e-mail. In fact, you could put your computer and your personal data at risk if you click on the link embedded.

Unscrupulous individuals recently began targeting e-mail accounts with a fake message from the Postal Service. In it, the seemingly helpful message refers to an attempted or intercepted package delivery or online postage charges. The reader is then instructed to click on a link to resolve the issue. This is when the malicious code attacks.

Once an individual clicks on the ‘helpful’ link, a harmful virus is transferred to the reader’s computer and begins its reign of terror. The computer program will gather important information such as login names, passwords, and other sensitive financial account information and transfer that data back to the source of the program.

How can this situation be avoided? The best way to block the attack is to avoid clicking on links sent in an e-mail message. If a company sends a message with instructions to click on a link, open a fresh page in your browser instead and type in the website of the business. You can navigate to where you need to go from there. Other suggestions from the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team include:

–         Use anti-virus protection software

–         Instructing anti-virus software to scan your computer every time you turn it on

–         Scan new software before running it on your computer

–         Be cautious about accessing downloaded files or clicking links from online communities or unfamiliar websites

–         Back up the information on your computer so it isn’t lost in the event a virus attacks your computer

For more information on the e-mail scam, go to the U.S. Postal Inspectors website at: https://postalinspectors.uspis.gov/radDocs/consumer/SpamAlert.pdf.

What measures do you take to protect your computer from harm?

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