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  • 1. Protecting Yourself Online
    A Short Guide

2. Being victimized online feels like lightening hit you.
3. Ways Lightening Strikes
Online Accounts
Social Networking
File Sharing
Mobile Devices
Wireless Home Networks
4. How to Deflect Lightening
Don't email personal or financial information.
Be cautious about opening any attachment or downloading any files from emails you receive, regardless of who sent them. Forward phishing emails to and to the company, bank, or organization impersonated in the phishing email.
You also may report phishing email to The Anti-Phishing Working Group, a consortium of ISPs, security vendors, financial institutions and law enforcement agencies, uses these reports to fight phishing.
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5. How to Deflect Lightening
Don't reply to email or pop-up messages that ask for personal or financial information, and don't click on links in the message.
Don't cut and paste a link from the message into your Web browser phishers can make links look like they go one place, but that actually send you to a different site.
Some scammers send an email that appears to be from a legitimate business and ask you to call a phone number to update your account or access a "refund."
Because they use Voice over Internet Protocol (VOIP) technology, the area code you call does not reflect where the scammers really are. If you need to reach an organization you do business with, call the number on your financial statements or on the back of your credit card.
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6. How to Deflect Lightening
Educate yourself about online financial transactions, banking and shopping by reading the information at the following link:
Don't email personal or financial information.
Review credit card and bank account statements as soon as you receive them to check for unauthorized charges.
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7. How to Deflect Lightening
Use a secure browser.
Check the sites privacy policy.
Keep records of your online transactions and check your email.
Idea: if you frequently shop online, open a separate account with its own debit card and put only the amount of money you will shop with in the account (separate from your main account for direct deposits of your paychecks, etc.).
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8. How to Deflect Lightening
Educate yourself about website cons by reading the information at the following link:
Use the free service from the website Web of Trust which provides a free software downloaded into your browser so while you are browsing, you can avoid websites that are unsafe.To learn more, go to:
When using an open web connection such as a free wireless access point (internet cafes, etc.), use a free operating system loaded on a CD or flash drive that still allows you to access your files but secures your computers operating system from spyware, malware, viruses, etc. because its not in use while you are using the CD or flashdrive.For more information read: example of a free operating system to use in this manner:
9. How to Deflect Lightening
Adults have to practice safety while networking online as well.Practice what you preach to your children.
While limiting access to close friends and relatives may seem safe, a user cannot be certain that one of those friends or relatives didnt decide to share the information by reposting it to their friends and relatives? I really envy Sally Smith. Shes going to a taping of Oprah on Wednesday and then shes going shopping for her daughters prom dress.
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10. How to Deflect Lightening
Many adults dont practice safety by:

  • Listing street address, city, state, and Zip code in their social media profile

11. List employer, job title, and even work schedule (the latter by posting just before leaving for work and again right after returning). 12. Post pictures of their home on social media sites. This provides criminals with location of doors and windows. Shrubbery where they can hide if necessary. 13. Post pictures of their possessions. A new car in the garage or driveway, a recently acquired work of art with other items of interest as background in the picture. 14. Posting times when the home will be vacantgoing on vacation, going to a movie, sporting event, night on the town, etc.MORE TO LEARN!!!See the last link on this slide!
For teaching kids: educate yourself about social networking by reading the information at the following link:
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15. How to Deflect Lightening
Peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing allows users to share files online through an informal network of computers running the same software. File-sharing can give you access to a wealth of information, but it also has a number of risks.
If you're considering P2P file-sharing:
Install file-sharing software carefully, so that you know what's being shared. Changes you make to the default settings of the "save" or "shared" folder might cause you to share folders and subfolders you don't want to share. Check the proper settings so that other users of the file-sharing network won't have access to your private files, folders, or sub-folders.
Use a security program from a vendor you know and trust; keep that software and your operating system up-to-date. Some file-sharing software may install malware or adware, and some files may include unwanted content.
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16. How to Deflect Lightening
If you're considering P2P file-sharing (continued):
You may want to adjust the file-sharing program's controls so that it is not connected to the P2P network all the time. Some file-sharing programs automatically open every time you turn on your computer and continue to operate even when you "close" them.
Consider setting up separate user accounts, in addition to the administrator's account, if your computer has multiple users. Limiting rights on user accounts may help protect your computer from unwanted software and your data from unwelcome sharing.
Back up data you don't want to lose in case of a computer crash, and use a password to protect any files that contain sensitive information.
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17. How to Deflect Lightening
Smart phones, cell phones, and handheld PCs can also be infected with viruses. Your mobile device can be infected when you download programs or files that are already infected. In the case of mobile phones, that might mean downloading photos, video clips, ring tones, cell phone themes, or other programs.
Mobile viruses can also spread through cell phones that are equipped with Bluetooth.If you have Bluetooth enabled on your mobile device and in "discoverable mode" (see the manual that came with your device for more information), and you come within 30 feet of another infected device that also has Bluetooth enabled and is running the same operating system as your mobile device, then you might get infected.
Only download or accept programs and content (including photos, video clips, ring tones, mobile device themes, and games) from a source you trust.
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18. How to Deflect Lightening
If your phone is equipped with Bluetooth, turn it off or set it to non-discoverable mode when you're not using it.
If your phone is equipped with Infrared beam, only allow it to receive incoming beams when you're receiving data from a source you trust.
Download and install antivirus software for your mobile device.
Remember to treat your phone or other handheld device as carefully you would your wallet, especially in places that are prone to theft.
Lock or protect your mobile device with a password, so if you do lose your mobile device, a thief will have a more difficult time using it to make phone calls or access personal information you may have stored on it.
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19. How to Deflect Lightening
Make sure you know how to block others from calling your phone. Using caller id you can block all incoming calls or block individual names and numbers.
Make a record of your Electronic Serial Number (ESN) and/or your International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) number.
Note: You can find out your IMEI number by pressing *#06# on your mobile phone's keypad, it will display a 15 digit number - that is your IMEI number.
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20. How to Deflect Lightening
MOBILE DEVICES (continued)
Beware of the GPS lo