If you’ve been watching the Olympics this year, you may have seen some great looking gear. And did you know that you can buy that gear? If you don’t, scammers certainly do. They are using Olympics-related information to scam unsuspecting buyers out of cash. They aren’t stopping there, either. They are also pretending to have special videos of unseen Olympic footage that if viewed, will just cause you grief. Unsurprisingly, links to all this may appear in your email in box.
First off, you actually can buy the gear. Just be sure to go to an officially licensed website to do so. If you see a link in your email in box, don’t click it. Instead, go to the official Olympics website and find other links there.
However, if you want to see special footage of the competitions, check out the television station websites in your area that are providing coverage. Again, don’t click on links or attachments.
In some cases, the Olympics-related links install ransomware. In other cases, it’s advertising, and still in others, it may pop up a webform for you to enter some type of personal information. In any event, don’t fall for any of this.
You can protect your devices from this and yourself from identity theft by doing a few simple things, besides not clicking on links:
- If you don’t already have security software installed on all your devices, do that. There are many options out there, and some are even free of charge. Just be sure to do some research and use a product from a reputable company.
- Always use passwords that are unique to each and every website you log into. Don’t forget to make them at least eight characters and include upper and lower case letters, numbers, and at least one special character.
- Whenever two-factor authentication (2FA) or multi-factor authentication (MFA) is offered to you for a website, take advantage. This can often be enabled in the “settings” area of the site.Always backup your important data and anything else you want to keep. You can use a cloud service provider, an external backup drive, or even just a USB drive that you manually save your important files on. Whatever you choose, at least you won’t lose what you need in the case of a malware strike.
The Olympics continue through the end of February. It’s likely the scams will continue beyond that. So, don’t let down your guard after the athletes go home. The scammers will still be playing their games.
Donovan B. Fox© Copyright 2018 SDFCU.org