Privacy, Identity & Online Security

Protecting your devices from cryptojacking

Instead of min(d)ing their own business, are scammers using your computer as their virtual ATM? Three years ago, the FTC warned the public and took action against cryptojacking. That’s where scammers use your device’s processing power to “mine” cryptocurrency, which they can then convert into cold, hard cash.

 

Free credit freezes are coming soon

Looking for stronger ways to protect your credit? Thanks to a new federal law, soon you can get free credit freezes and year-long fraud alerts. Here’s what to look forward to when the law takes effect on September 21st:

No gift cards for tech support scammers

Hey computer users, it’s time for a pop quiz.

A) You get an urgent call or email from a tech support company, saying your computer has a problem. Should you give the company remote access to your computer to make repairs?

B) A warning announcing “suspicious activity” or “security threat detected” appears on your computer screen. Should you call the number shown on the screen to talk to a technician?

C) One of these tech support companies asks you to pay for its services, maybe by using a gift card (like from iTunes or Amazon) or wire transfer. Should you?

Winners are losers in lottery & sweepstakes scams

You get a card, call, or email telling you that you won! Maybe it’s a lottery, sweepstakes, or some other prize. The person calling is excited and can’t wait for you to get your winnings. But here’s what happens next...

Untangling a robocaller web

Sick of getting robocalls and other unwanted calls? You can learn more about how to block them at ftc.gov/calls.

You also might know that the FTC continues to go after the people and companies behind these calls. Case in point: today the FTC announced a case against a group of defendants that it alleges are responsible for billions of illegal robocalls.

Privacy: From principles to practice

Privacy Awareness Week, an event organized by the Asia Pacific Privacy Authorities, is May 14-18, 2018. This year’s theme, “From Principles to Practice,” echoes the Federal Trade Commission’s mission to help consumers and businesses stay on top of privacy and online security. Here’s a sampling of how we make that happen.

The First Lady, talking with kids about being online

Today, First Lady Melania Trump introduced her initiative to help children everywhere be their best. At her launch event at the White House, the First Lady distributed copies of Talking with Kids About Being Online, a guide to help parents and other adults have thoughtful conversations with kids about being safe and responsible online. We’re excited that the First Lady is sharing this important information with families across the country.

Change your Twitter password. Now.

You may have heard the recent news that Twitter discovered a bug that stored passwords “unmasked” in an internal log. What does this mean? If you are a Twitter user, your password could be exposed. Twitter says that there are no signs of a breach of misuse by anyone currently, but it’s still a good idea to change your password. Did you use the same password for other accounts? Change those, too.

Mobile phone maker misled people on privacy & security

People use their mobile devices for everything from making calls and sending emails and text messages to maintaining contact lists, taking photos, surfing the web, and finding the best travel routes. You count on your device to help with your daily routine, and you expect that your information will be private and secure. Well, some mobile device companies deal with privacy and data security better than others.

FTC asking for access to your computer? It’s a scam.

Scammers pretending to be with the FTC or with FTC refund administrators are calling, asking for remote access to your computer. It’s been reported that the scammers are calling specifically about the FTC’s Advanced Tech Support refund program. Their goal is to make you think you are moments away from getting money that’s owed to you – and, to get the money, all you need to do is allow them to connect to your computer. It’s a scam.

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