We actively monitor email flow across all of our clients and tweak the security as/when required, however no system should be relied on to protect you from 100% of spam, and on occasion unwanted emails will get through.

In particular we’ve noticed an increase in targeted emails asking the recipient to arrange the transfer of funds via bank transfer – these emails can be very convincing and often appear to come from a valid user in the organisation.

 We’ve seen the following examples being used more and more frequently:

  • Someone poses as a boss of the company instructing staff to make a wire transfer into the fraudster’s account.
  • Fraudsters pose as the IT services department of a bank saying they want to make a test transfer – but it’s not a test.
  • Fraudsters claim to be a supplier and ask for outstanding invoices to be paid into a new bank account.

 

We recommend all staff remain vigilant when opening emails, particularly if receiving an email that relates to a financial transfer or one with an unexpected attachment.

 To help identify spam you may want to review each email based on the following key points:

1.       Look at the sender’s email address:

– but remember, email addresses can be spoofed to look like someone you know so be cautious.

2.       Look at the Subject line:

– Does it create a sense of urgency e.g. ‘You have an unpaid fine’ ‘your Account is locked’? These are often viruses.

– Does it have 1 word in it but appears to be a response like “Re: Document”? – This is also a tell-tale sign of a  virus.

3.       Look at the body of the message:

– If the sender is a recognized sender, does it follow their normal emailing criteria

– Does it have a salutation

– is it directed to you specifically, or is it generic (Hi, vs Hi Adam,).

– Does it have a signature for the person who sent it? Does it match the name of the person you identified in the email address above?

– Does it have the company’s contact information and/or graphics that you’ve been accustomed to seeing if you’ve received mail from them before?

4.       Look at the content of the body:

– Is it just asking you to open a file or go to a website link? Is it asking you to arrange payment or complete a financial transaction?

5.       Look at the direction of the message

– Does it ask you to open an attached file? Does it create a sense of urgency? With viruses, the purpose of the body is to entice you to open the attachment. A common method is by fear and urgency.

6.       Look at the attachment:

– is it a zip file? Is it a PDF? Is it a docx or doc? – how big is it? If it’s really small, around 1kb to 22kb, it is quite likely a virus – couple this information with the above identifying marks above and you will have a very good indication that it’s a virus.

We hope you found these tips useful, but if you still have questions and would like to discuss security please call us in the office on 01444 250404.

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