How to avoid being phished

You may’ve seen news this week about Hotmail, Yahoo Mail, and Gmail users’ having their email addresses and passwords compromised in a huge phishing scam. The BBC reported seeing “two lists that detail more than 30,000 names and passwords.” A phishing scam usually involves an email from what looks like a legitimate business telling you that you need to do something like “click here to confirm your account info”; clicking there takes the victim to an illegitimate (or criminal) site that steals your info. “There are simple ways to avoid becoming a victim or being further victimized,” writes ConnectSafely co-director Larry Magid in CNET. He lists some tips that might be good to share with everyone at your house or school, looking for the “s” in “https://” that stands for “secure server,” and not clicking but instead accessing your account by typing the URL of the company or bank in the email directly into your browser window, then logging in to see if there’s a real update or instruction to customers. Also check out ConnectSafely’s tips for creating strong passwords.

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