It seems that a man had called her and told her that Microsoft had noticed some security problems on her computer system (which is about 5-6 years old). After an hour on the phone, this relative had given the man her credit card number for a $119 security program that was supposed to make all the bad things happening to her computer go away. The trouble was, she hadn’t been having any problems, but the man made it seem like the problem was so imminent.
This relative, who is well-known as a short conversationalist when on the phone, remained patient with the stranger who ultimately asked her to install the program and give him $119 with personal information and a credit card number. He even asked her if she used the computer for online banking and other social media programs.
The key to this unfortunate story is that users remember the No. 1 rule: Never, ever give out your personal information or financial information over the phone to a total stranger, regardless of what he says, no legitimate professional in the internet security or antivirus industry would ever call you telling you that he’s detected a security problem.
In addition to never giving your personal information or financial information to strangers, Avira also makes it easy for users to find out if their information has been stolen. Identity Safeguard is a feature that is part of Avira Mobile Security for iOS app that came out a few weeks back. Avira is the only security vendor to offer iOS users a free way to find out if their personal email is one of the 160 million that have been caught in phishing scams or other types of security breaches in the last several months.
Not only can users see if their personal identity details have been leaked in any security breaches, but they can also scan their entire address book to detect if any friend’s email has been compromised. If found, users can email these breached contacts directly to alert them about the danger. On average, between 5% and 10% of a typical user’s address book contains email addresses that have been compromised.
Remember, never give away personal information to strangers, and remember to try Identity Safeguard if you’re an iOS user to ensure your personal email has not been compromised.
This post is also available in: German