August 2016 Issue #1

Are emails you send on the job

really confidential?

Controversy over hacked Democratic party emails has dominated the news of late. But what about the emails that you send and receive every day while at work? Regulations affect virtually every email, text and chat on your work computer.

 

  • Remember that all emails, texts and chats created on computers owned by your employer are accessible by your employer — even if you send them to and from your personal accounts, and even if you delete them.

  • So use your personal computer or smart phone to send personal messages, and only use your personal email address, not your work address.

  • Most organizations are required to store all emails for up to seven years in case they’re sued. So emails you compose today could resurface years from now in court.

  • As nolo.com says, “Never send an email at work that you wouldn’t want your mother to read!

 

Learn more in our NTSC article about email by clicking here.

 

And read our interview with attorney Kent Antley, an expert in the technology practice at the law firm of Miller and Martin and a co-founder of the Technology Association of Georgia, the largest membership organization of its kind in North America. 

One of the easiest ways for criminals to gain access to your company's data is to simply drop a flash drive in the parking lot. The drive, infected with dangerous software, launches as soon as it's is plugged in to a computer. 

Even professionals often fall for the trick. 

- 60% of Department of Homeland Security employees plugged in an unfamiliar flash drive if it didn't have a logo on it

- 90% of them plugged in the drive if it did display a company's brand name

How big a problem is infected flash drives? Here's a research paper that shows why you should trash a flash drive unless you're certain where it came from. 

In only a few weeks, Pokemon Go has become the most popular online game in US history. Players use their GPS-enabled smartphones for a treasure hunt to "capture" cartoon monsters and take pictures of them.

On the plus side, players are getting lots of exercise. On the downside, some players are so focused on the game, they're getting hurt by not paying attention to their surroundings. 

Three things parents should know:

  • The Pokemon Go app should only be downloaded from Apple's app store or Google Play. Other sources are likely not secure. Check user reviews to make sure the version you're downloading is authentic. 

  • Installing the game grants the company that developed it access to some of the Google data on the phone and permission to use it. Users can change that setting manually. 

  • Playing can get expensive. Parents should understand the idea of Pokecoins, which players can buy as they progress and cost between $1 and $100. 

Side by side of a real and a fake Pokemon Go sign-up screen. There's no visible difference between the real one and the fake one!

Why are you apt to fall victim to "phishing"? 

Psychologist Sean Kaufman says it's because you're so busy.

Check out our Xtreme Solutions podcast. 

Starting this month, you'll be able to use your fingerprint instead of a passcode at some ATMs.

McDonald's joins the list of companies that filters which websites you can access when using their free wi-fi. 

You've heard of ransomware, where bad guys lock your computer and charge you a fee to get your files back? Well, Android is taking steps to block ransomware from your phone in their next mobile software release.

Ever been tempted to illegally download a movie from a website? You shouldn't, of course. A new report says you're apt to get a computer virus along with the free movie. 

What's your password? Don't ever answer that!

Percentage of US companies that suffered a cyber breach last year (AT&T)

Percentage of those breaches caused, in some way, by human error (IBM)

Amount Apple stands to make from Pokemon Go, which is more than Nintendo will make (CBS Marketwatch)

Percentage of U.S. Android phone owners who are playing Pokemon Go (Fortune)

Average amount of time, in minutes per day, the average Pokemon Go player spends with the app (Business Insider)

"Social Security Number Cards by themselves were never intended to be personal identity documents because they cannot confirm that a person presenting a card is actually the person whose name appears on the card."

          — Ron Lewis

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Hervia M. Ingram, Jr.

Founder/President

Xtreme Solutions

Original content and design

©2016 Aware Force LLC

Pokemon Go player photo

courtesy of Polygon