Protect your online accounts against cyber-crime
At Principality, we take your security very seriously, so we're highlighting some advice from the National Crime Agency (NCA).
- What do I need to do?
Join the fight against cyber-crime
If you've flicked through the news recently, you may have read or heard about the National Crime Agency’s official warning about cyber-attacks. Following a worldwide effort to combat a number of viruses which are thought to have infected over 15,500 British computers, UK computer users are being urged to protect their personal and business computers from cyber-attacks and viruses.
Do your bit to help fight cyber-crime
The National Crime Agency (NCA) has teamed up with the FBI and other cyber-crime experts in a bid to take down a cyber-criminal network’s ‘command and control’ malware (malicious software), which may be costing UK computer users millions of pounds.
More than 15,500 British computers have already been invaded by two distinct forms of malware, namely two viruses called GOZeuS and CryptoLocker, which are infecting computers and are controlled by a network of criminals thought to be based in Russia or Eastern Europe, and this particular scam is believed to have raked in over £60m already.
Many more computers running on Windows remain under threat from the viruses, which can remotely take control of computers to steal information and transfer money from online bank accounts without the users’ knowledge.
Aside from online banking account theft, webcams can also be controlled and activated remotely. Cyber-criminals may also seek to gain money through holding private photographs, video files, email accounts or other information to ransom.
By disrupting the system used by the infected computers to communicate with each other, and consequently disrupting the criminals controlling them, the NCA and FBI are aiming to significantly reduce the malware’s effectiveness.
You can help beat cyber-crime by acting now to tighten up your computer’s security and ensuring your computer is protected with the appropriate anti-virus software.
What do I need to do?
- Make sure you have anti-virus software installed and it is up to date.
- Check you've installed the latest vendor security patches (e.g., Windows, MS Office, Adobe, Java).
- Do not open attachments in emails, click on links or click ‘OK’ on pop-up messages unless you're 100% certain they're authentic.
- Back up important files, pictures, videos etc. to a separate hard drive or cloud service. It may be time consuming, but how much would you miss them if you lost them?
- Do not keep any security details such as usernames, passwords or memorable words on your PCs in clear text (e.g. email, sticky notes, notepad).
- Download one of the tools available from www.getsafeonline.org/nca. If you find that you are infected, run the free tools also available via the www.getsafeonline.org/nca site and follow the advice given.