IT Gurus is a small, independent IT and mobile device specialist which has recently opened its latest branch in Hungerford High Street.
Here are five of their tips worth bearing in mind to help protect yourself against a number of scams and threats. You may well have heard these before but good advice is always worth repeating…
The biggest issues we currently deal with for our clients involve online hacking and viruses. These hackers are so advanced they are even now targeting large organisations like the NHS. There are a few simple things to remember which can help to make you a little less vulnerable to these sorts of threats.
1 Microsoft and other reputable software companies will generally never call you. If someone rings claiming you have an IT problem and asking you to turn your PC on to let then connect remotely, simply tell them, thanks, but you will pop it in to your local PC shop (such as IT Repair Gurus, for instance) for a free check if you decide this is necessary.
2 Your bank or building society will seldom call you either and will certainly never do so to ask you to reveal any information such as PIN numbers. If you receive a call claiming to be from your bank requesting security details we recommend you hang up and call the bank directly to check.
3 If it sounds to good to be true it probably is! We see a lot of people getting calls or emails telling them they have won money or a refund. These people generally are trying to obtain bank details.
4 For a lot of people, the majority of emails they receive are unsolicited. Your spam filter (contact us to discuss this if you don’t have one) will deal with some but others will get through. Some are merely annoying, others genuinely harmful. Common scams – all of which are designed to infect your computer or access data – include a plausible-sounding request to open an attachment or click on a link. Often these emails will look official, complete with logos. (One giveaway is that these sometimes come from email addresses similar to those of a large company but with the suffix slightly mis-spelled: ‘amason’ or ‘barclys’, for instance.) Never open any attachment or click on any link unless you’re expecting it. Another common scam involves an email claiming to be from a friend stuck abroad and needing money after a series of personal disasters. All in all, if it doesn’t look right it probably isn’t. If in doubt, and in particularly if you think you might have opened or clicked on something nasty, come down and see us.
5 Ransomware generally locks all of your files and demands you pay a ransom to get them back. if you get infected by this it is generally too late to do anything to avoid but we can help you get up and running again, if you get infected with a ransomware do not pay the ransom, come and see us and we can help you out. (Even if you do pay this it’s far from certain that you’ll ever receive the promised reactivation code.) Our backup package is a great way get around ransomware. (more details on request).
What the first four of these scams have in common is that these people are trying to get you to reveal something about yourself to them: just as you would with a suspicious stranger at your front door, don’t let them in!
Of course there are also other threats by which your data may be being corrupted without your realising, ransomware being one. We can help advise how your devices can be protected as much as possible and – almost as important – how you can ensure you have adequate backups.
Contact us on 01488 505 086 or [email protected] or else drop into our shop at 8 Hungerford High Street to discuss how we can help keep the gremlins at bay.