How Not to Get Hooked by a ‘ Phishing’ Scam

“We suspect an unauthorized transaction on your account. To ensure that your account is not compromised, please click the link below and confirm your identity.”

“During our regular verification of accounts, we couldn’t verify your information. Please click here to update and verify your information.”

Have you received email with a similar message? It’s a scam called “phishing” — and it involves Internet fraudsters who send spam or pop-up messages to lure personal information (credit card numbers, bank account information, PAN number, passwords, or other sensitive information) from unsuspecting victims.

Phishers send an email or pop-up message that claims to be from a business or organization that you may deal with — for example, an Internet service provider (ISP), bank, online payment service, or even a government agency. The message may ask you to “update,” “validate,” or “confirm” your account information. Some phishing emails threaten a dire consequence if you don’t respond. The messages direct you to a website that looks just like a legitimate organization’s site. But it isn’t. It’s a bogus site whose sole purpose is to trick you into divulging your personal information so the operators can steal your identity and run up bills or commit crimes in your name.

Tips to help you avoid getting hooked by a phishing scam:

  • If you get an email or pop-up message that asks for personal or financial information, do not reply. And don’t click on the link in the message, either. Legitimate companies don’t ask for this information via email. If you are concerned about your account, contact the organization mentioned in the email using a telephone number you know to be genuine, or open a new Internet browser session and type in the company’s correct Web address yourself. In any case, don’t cut and paste the link from the message into your Internet browser — phishers can make links look like they go to one place, but that actually send you to a different site.
  • Use anti-virus software and a firewall, and keep them up to date. Some phishing emails contain software that can harm your computer or track your activities on the Internet without your knowledge.

    Anti-virus software and a firewall can protect you from inadvertently accepting such unwanted files. Anti-virus software scans incoming communications for troublesome files. Look for anti-virus software that recognizes current viruses as well as older ones; that can effectively reverse the damage; and that updates automatically.

    A firewall helps make you invisible on the Internet and blocks all communications from unauthorized sources. It’s especially important to run a firewall if you have a broadband connection. Operating systems (like Windows or Linux) or browsers (like Internet Explorer or Netscape) also may offer free software “patches” to close holes in the system that hackers or phishers could exploit.

  • Don’t email personal or financial information. Email is not a secure method of transmitting personal information. If you initiate a transaction and want to provide your personal or financial information through an organization’s website, look for indicators that the site is secure, like a lock icon on the browser’s status bar or a URL for a website that begins “https:” (the “s” stands for “secure”). Unfortunately, no indicator is foolproof; some phishers have forged security icons.
  • Review credit card and bank account statements as soon as you receive them to check for unauthorized charges. If your statement is late by more than a couple of days, call your credit card company or bank to confirm your billing address and account balances.
  • Be cautious about opening any attachment or downloading any files from emails you receive, regardless of who sent them. These files can contain viruses or other software that can weaken your computer’s security.
  • Forward spam that is phishing for information to the original organization that is sought to be represented, so that they can initiate action, and block the same.
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Archiving Folders to save disk space

Windows XP makes it easy to compress or zip files.
This is especially handy when you want to send a
folder containing several files in an e-mail message.
To compress a file or folder:

1. Right-click the file that you want to compress.
2. Point to Send To and click Compressed (Zipped)
Folder.

Windows XP immediately creates a new compressed folder
in the same location as the source file. You can
identify the new compressed folder by a little zipper
on the folder’s icon. You can then safely delete the
original file.

Courtesy : H S

Windows Logo key Shortcuts

The Windows logo key, located in the bottom row of
most computer keyboards is a little-used treasure.
Don’t ignore it. It is the shortcut anchor for the
following commands: Windows: Display the Start menu
Windows + D: Minimize or restore all windows Windows +
E: Display Windows Explorer Windows + F: Display
Search for files Windows + Ctrl + F: Display Search
for computer Windows + F1: Display Help and Support
Center Windows + R: Display Run dialog box Windows +
break: Display System Properties dialog box Windows +
shift + M: Undo minimize all windows Windows + L: Lock
the workstation Windows + U: Open Utility Manager

Courtesy : H S

Moving Excel Sheets – Very Easy !!

Moving Right Next Door

As I’m sure we all know, you can rearrange worksheets in an MS Excel file with a simple click-hold-and-drag of the sheet tab.

But, did you know that you can also move worksheets from one workbook to another using the same method?
No?
Well, good news, you can, and it’s really as easy as it sounds.
First, open both workbooks. (The one with the worksheet and the one to which the worksheet needs to be relocated).
Next, arrange your workbooks side by side using the Window menu, Arrange choice and then making a choice from the Arrange window. Click OK.
Next, you need to click and hold the sheet tab to be moved.
Now, still holding down the left mouse button, drag the sheet tab into the other file.
You’ll see the small triangle that appears when a sheet is moved, so you can tell where it will be located.
When it’s where you need it to be, simply release the mouse button.
Voila!
The sheet is moved from one workbook to another. No fuss, no muss!

Disconnect from internet when not in use

To Connect or Disconnect When Not in Use?

This choice relates to so many friends’ questions. Should you leave your computer connected to the internet when you aren’t working online? “It takes so long to re-dial,” or “I can’t reach the connection cord, but I’ve heard (fill in your own favorite rumor here).”

Personally, I choose to only stay connected when I’m working at my computer, online or off. When I’m not physically sitting at my computer, I disconnect the cable line manually since it’s easy to reach on my system. I think of it as raising the drawbridge against the bad guys. When your computer is not online, there’s no route for remote unauthorized access. Of course, many PCs have their connection cables in the back where they can be hard to reach.

Other folks in the office like to use an option in their firewall Shut off Net Connection to disconnect from the web without reaching for the cords. This will look different in every firewall program, and it may not be available in all of them.

In XP, you also have the ability to disable net connections through My Network Places, typically found as an icon in the upper left corner. Click on that and the Network Connections window will appear. Right-click on your connection and choose Disable.

To get your connection back, repeat the above instructions, only choose Enable or Connect instead of Disable. There may be a brief delay and icon change while your PC gets a fresh IP address from your service provider.

In fact, it’s a good idea to run your antivirus and antispyware programs while your PC is offline every once in awhile. Some spyware can alert an offsite user (you know, the bad guy) that your scan has started so he can put the malware back onto your machine as soon as the scan has completed. Obviously, you’ll want to update your definition files online before you go offline to scan your system, but scanning while offline prevents outside interference with your security measures.

Tip – Google Search

We all use Google to search for various things online. Did you know that if you open up your fridge and type what you have inside your fridge, into a Google Search Box, you can actually get a recipe to make something out of the ingredients you have ? Try it – you will be surprised !

For the more business minded, if you want a quick conversion of currency, type “USD to GBP” and presto ! You have the conversion rate right on your desktop !

Googling is one of the most used methods of searching the net. However, it often happens that when we search for something, it floods us with a zillion results. So now, our focus has to shift from “where to search” to “how to search”. http://www.googleguide.com offers a complete guide to search for both beginners and advanced users.

World Time Clock

Dear Friends,

Many people want a good and quick world time clock (including adjustments for Summer & Winter – which I personally find most confusing) on their Browser.
I like to use the clock available at this location : http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/personal.html

Click on the first link for configuration, add the cities which you need to have, and bookmark the link. Any time you want to look up the time in those cities, you just have to click on the bookmark and the current time in those cities is available right on your browser.

Browse around the site and you will get very interesting information like :

* Search for city – and include it in your Personal World Clock
* The World Clock Meeting Planner
* Time Zone Converter – If it’s 3 pm in New York, what time is it in Sydney?
* Fixed Time Calculator – If it’s 3 pm in New York, what time is it in the rest of the world?

Good, fast and easy !