3 April 2020

Each day this week our IT Manager, Kerry Jones, has provided advice to help us with our working from home and what is available to use that we do not think about while in the Office when everything is at hand.

The gem that came at the end of the first full week in Lockdown was Cyber Security – Keeping Ourselves Safe. This is because of the resurgence of scam or security threats circulating during Covid-19. Identifying the threats is the key.






Kerry’s Basic Tips Are:

Identifying scams or security threats as they come in via email, text or phone.

  • Do you trust the sender or person
  • Are you expecting email from that sender or person
    • Does the subject or content match up with how you would normally communicate with them even if they are a colleague
  • Does the subject or contect match up with how you would normally communicate with them if they are a colleague
  • Be very wary about external links to open files, sign into a website or provide any credentials
  • Check the senders email address. Just because it says “Shirley Temple” as the name, check the senders email address by hovering over the name. If it doesn’t say what you would expect such as it’s usually a scam
  • Check the link on any external file – if the address for the link does not match the users valid domain (the part of the address) then it’s usually a scam
  • Spelling and Grammatical Errors. This usually identifies most scams. Some scams are pretty good, just remember that sometimes the person sending the scam doesn’t have English as their first language
  • Most scams induce time limited warnings such as “Your account will close in X hours if you do not click on this link and enter your username and password”
  • The following organisations are never going to ask you for your logon or password
    • Your Bank
    • IRD
    • Spark \ Vodafone or any Telco
    • Microsoft
    • Apple
    • Google
    • Adobe
    • Power Company
    • Basically anybody else of credibility
  • Does it pass what I refer to as the Common Sense or Sensibility Test
  • Lastly the phone call over a bad VOIP connection telling you that your computer has a virus and you need to have it cleaned is always a scam

Dealing with Threats

Threats are really simple to deal with in three simple ways

  • Hang up on the person if it’s a phone call. If you think it could be genuine, ask for a phone number to call them back on, hang up and call them back
  • Ignore the email or text
  • Best method – simply delete it