Salute to Our Armed Forces

Happy Memorial Day Weekend Everyone

As we celebrate our long weekend, let’s not forget our troops.

Dodged a Facebook Hack Bullet…but Just Barely

Ok I have to admit something. Yesterday, I almost fell for a hacker’s scam. Don’t get me wrong, I am at the front of the class when it comes to firewall protection and virus-spam-phishing-malware protection. But still, yesterday…I was so so close to getting bit.

Hackers launched an attack on Facebook yesterday and upon the 200 million users therein. The purpose of the attack was to gather passwords. Many speculated the hope of the hackers was identity theft and to solicit fake products to Facebook users.  Considering if Facebook was a country, its 200 million users would make it the 5th largest nation on the planet, I am not surprised the site’s users face these issues from time to time.

Below is a cropped screen shot of a message within my Facebook Inbox, the names and pics have been covered <so someone out there can breath a sigh of relief  :) >.  The message was sent to a large number of people and Heading was a simple “Hello.”  The message contained a request to check out an obscurely named website and upon clicking the link one was sent to what appeared to be the Facebook log-in page. Sadly it was not the log-in page but the phisher’s site and here is where passwords and information were gathered.  The attack looked like this in my Inbox;

Facebook Hack

As you can see, many commented on the thread as they attempted to reach the hack site. It appears that everyone in this thread clicked after Facebook cleaned up the mess.

Here is what Ryan McGeehan (of Facebook) had to say on the Facebook blog;

When the latest phishing incident surfaced on Wednesday, we quickly blocked the fake links from being shared on Facebook to stop their spread. We’ve been removing these links from Walls and Inboxes across the site and resetting passwords for any of the compromised accounts we detect. This foils the bad guys, because the login information they collect will no longer work.

Now here is my confession. I had a busy day but noticed several comments to a Facebook Inbox message being dropped into my email. Last night I looked at the message thread and considered clicking the link…but it was late and I did not. This morning, I became aware of the hack and realized how close I was to being a victim. So what does one do? This message was from a trusted source and the sending of links on social networks is very very common? Although not full proof, here are a few simple guidelines to help you stay safe;

  • change your passwords often
  • never open an email/message from someone you do not know
  • always keep your virus-malware-phishing-spam software up-to-date
  • turn your firewall on
  • back up your data frequently
  • update your operating system as asked
  • and finally, when in doubt…check it out (ask the source if they sent the email)

My guess is that everyone reading this post knows what to do to protect themselves. You are probably doing what you need to do, I was and still…I almost clicked the link. I guess the one piece we cannot forget is awareness. We get busy, we are busy, we will be busy…and the result is a drop in awareness. That is what happened to me so please, try not to let it happen to you.

World Changing at the Speed of Light

This video is so impactful and relative, I had to post it… Watch it and see for yourself, would love to hear your comments.