Email Security


By now most people know at least one of the security issues out there: identity theft, scamming, phishing, hacking, etc. This section of our web site is to keep you informed in what’s out there and how to keep your identity and personal information safe.



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Protect your small business & personal computers


Avoid being compromised on line by following these steps:


  • Keep your computer and anti-virus software set to update and run automatically.

  • Use different and strong passwords for each online account.

  • For your mobile phone, check often for software updates and only install trusted apps.

  • Contact your phone provider to add a password or PIN to your accounts.


Avoid Phishing & Malware


You may think that your email is secure, but the bottom line is email is not secure because it prioritizes delivery over security. Following all the general electronic security guidelines can help you protect your computer and your information.


Phishing lures and malware could be hiding almost anywhere online. Staying vigilant no matter where you are can help you protect yourself and your information. But you're most likely to run into them via email, so we'll provide you with tips and best practices for staying safe with email.


Tips to Spot Email Scams


These best practices can help you spot and avoid email scams: 


  • Take a moment to look at the email address – does the alias or sender look legitimate?


  • Consider whether the content of the email makes sense

    • Would a Nigerian prince really want to give you a million dollars?


  • Watch out for messages urging you to act fast before you think.


  • Beware of emails asking you to respond or call them with contact or financial information or personal information, such as date of birth or social security number (or other tax ID).​​​

    • Even if you answer the first question "yes," don't reply to the email or call the number provided. Contact the sender directly to determine if the request is legitimate. (For example, call the number on the back of your credit card.)


  • First, ask yourself if the sender has a legitimate reason to be asking for this information.


  • Beware of emails that contain links and/or attachments, and be careful before clicking or opening them. The easiest way to protect yourself is to not click on suspicious or unknown links.


  • Malicious links are the most common scam tool and one of the easiest to spot if you know what you're looking for. At first glance, the URL may appear legitimate, but…

    • The true URL could be hidden (a link's text can look like a URL, while link itself points somewhere else). Hover over the link to see where it's really pointing.

    • A link shortening service might be used to hide the malicious destination.

    • The URL may contain misleading typos, such as instead of


  • Ask yourself whether you're expecting an attachment from this person.

    • The only attachment file format that isn't a potential threat is .txt. Treat all other attachments as potentially malicious.

    • Attachments, especially Microsoft Office files like .xls could contain hidden malware, even if they pass your virus protection scan.


  • And when in doubt, confirm the message content with the sender before taking any action, including clicking links, saving/opening attachments, or calling the phone number.

    • Confirm via a method other than email, if possible.

    • If not, compose a new message.

      • Make sure you are not replying to the suspicious message – that could go to the phisher!

Want to learn more about protecting yourself from phishing?


Click here to read the Federal Trade Commission's detailed advice.


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