Scammers are always looking for new ways to steal people’s data. It is common for scammers to create websites that are designed to look like they are part of Microsoft, Apple, or any other number of companies. The most recent scam is a site that looks like it could be a Microsoft site that allows you to download the new Windows 11 operating system. The problem is that the download is not actually Windows 11. If you click on the link that downloaded RedLine Stealer which is high-risk malware designed to steal information on your computer.
The website was put up in January 2022 after Microsoft announced its final phase of the Windows 11 rollout. With so many people looking for the new download, the chances of people finding the fake site and downloading the malware were very high.
The problem is that the fake site was very convincing in its looks and feel. These scammers have gotten a lot better when it comes to making fake sites that look real, so it is becoming tougher to protect yourself.
There are ways to protect yourself from phishing attacks and fake websites. The best way to protect yourself is to know what to look for.
Check the URL of the website you are on or going to. – Be aware of what the actual website should be and compare that to the website you are on. In the case of Microsoft, it is pretty easy since the website is www.microsoft.com. If the download is not coming from Microsoft, do not download the software or click on any links.
Many times, these fake websites are sent to people through email. There are several things you can look for in the email to give you clues that the email and website are not legitimate.
Subject lines in all caps. Major corporations rarely, if ever, send out emails with subject lines in all caps.
Look at the list of email recipients. Legitimate emails will not show a list of recipients. The email will be addressed to you alone. If you do not see a list of other recipients but you see “undisclosed recipients” it is also a sign that the email is a fake.
Fake emails will ask you to confirm sensitive account information or ask you to login or submit payment information. Do not do any of that. Never give information to anyone or through any email that is unsolicited. If you are looking at an email, and you want to know if what the email says is legitimate, close the email, open a new browser and go to the company’s website directly and look to see if you have any messages in your account for you.
Email not formatted correctly. Emails from scammers will be addressed to “Dear Valued Customer” instead of having your name in the email. Emails from banks or corporations you have relationships with will personalize the email to include your name. Fake emails will also lead you to sites that are often unsecured (http vs https), have typos, low-resolution images, and email addresses using domains other than what the real company uses, or will even have emails from a public account, such as Gmail.
Knowing how to protect yourself from scammers and phishing is important, but at some point, everyone clicks on a bad link. For when you do, it is important that your computer is protected with anti-virus and antimalware software.
The best way to protect your computer is to let us manage it for you. Our services include anti-virus and antimalware and we also manage the updates to your computer only sending through the updates that are absolutely necessary. With Unfrustrating Computers, you will no longer have to worry about what software you can download because we will manage it for you.