Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Stay alert - there's a new scam, a new victim - don't let it be you...

“We live in an uncomfortable world,” observed my daughter last week.  An interesting observation which came up because I had my rewards account hacked and a substantial number of points stolen and used for a plane ticket.  My guess he was off on a world trip!

Then I had this red alert on my computer, saying my computer had been closed down because my credit card and bank accounts had been hacked, and for security purposes I had to phone this number so we could correct it.

I didn’t call.

Instead, I checked on the latest scams, and sure enough there it was.  But the noise and ferocity of the message were scary.  It was like one of those Amber Alerts when a child goes missing – loud and menacing. To get it to stop, I had to turn off my computer completely.

It all left me feeling somewhat unsettled, especially given that I’d had my rewards account hacked the day before. So I spent my afternoon, changing passwords and checking bank balances – all was safe.

However, it is a statement on our society today, and as my daughter suggested, it leaves you feeling uncomfortable, jaded.  Even with Google, you check something out, and next minute on Facebook there’s a related ad to what you’d been investigating.   Very Big Brother.

However, I have learned from this experience and I no longer store my passwords and account numbers on my computer … far too easy for someone to gain access. Unfortunately I have also learned to be suspicious of callers, email messages and the like.  I no longer take information at face value.  And that’s kind of sad.

1 comment:

Carolyn Watt said...

It is a sad state of affairs indeed Anne. I bought a little black book, like an address book, designed to store URLs, user names and passwords. Seems to do the trick for me. I picked it up at Chapters a few years ago. And as for scams, I've been on websites that suddenly start talking to you, an alarm goes off and your screen flashes...and oh yes, your blood pressure soars along with that. In fact, I got so frazzled I wasn't sure what to do...the sound was so loud I couldn't even think. I called a friend and she said turn the sound off on your computer then call your computer guy...Sage advice.