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As vital as email is, it has some ugly sides. In addition to spam and phishing, one more threat associated with it is email bombing. In this article we’ll discuss what email bombing is and how to protect oneself from being attacked with an email bomb.What Is Email Bombing?
According to Wikipedia, email bombing is “a form of net abuse consisting of sending huge volumes of email to an address in an attempt to overflow the mailbox or overwhelm the server where the email address is hosted in a denial-of-service attack.”
As you see from the definition, fortunately email bombing is very resource-intensive and as a result it is more difficult to implement than a spam campaign, for example. Also, unlike spam and especially phishing, email bombers gain only satisfaction and rarely money, which coupled with its high resource demands, makes it a less popular choice for online criminals.
In fact, in your lifetime you might never become a victim of an email bombing campaign, while you can’t avoid phishing and spam. This is good news for sure but still it won’t hurt to know how to protect yourself against email bombing.How to Protect Yourself Against Email Bombing
The following lays out what you can do to protect yourself from email bombing.1. Choose a Reliable Email Service Provider
If your email provider has done their homework to prevent email bombing on a network level, ninety-nine percent of the job is done. If they haven’t, there is still something you can do, but it’s not much. Therefore, it’s vital to go with a good provider – one that has a good spam filter, reliable servers, and competent staff to deal with such an attack.2. Be Careful Who You Give Your Email To
In order to get an email bomb, an email bomber needs to have your email address. As with spam and phishing, just be careful whom and where you give your email address. It will help if you have multiple email addresses for different purposes – e.g. work, friends, banking, shopping, etc. – so if an email address of yours gets compromised, the damage will be narrowed down to only one aspect of your life.3. Report the Attack
Your provider might have already discovered the suspicious activity in your Inbox, but if they haven’t, file a report to notify them. They might be able to stop the attack immediately at server level.4. Check Your Online Banking Accounts
One of the ugliest sides of email bombing is that it could be used as a cover as a diversion tactic to distract your attention so that you don’t notice an important email – for instance, a notification about a withdrawal from an account of yours. So if you become a victim of online bombing, check your online banking accounts immediately for any suspicious activity. If there is a breach, the sooner you discover it, the better the chances to minimize damage.
Though it is certainly not pleasant to become a victim of email bombing, for you as an individual email bombing isn’t as much of an issue as for your email provider. Aside from making illegitimate payments from your online banking accounts, the worst consequence from an email bomb is that you can remain without the email account for a while. If you have other email accounts or other ways to be contacted, this isn’t the end of the world.
I am a fulltime freelancer who loves technology. Linux and Web technologies are my main interests and two of the topics I most frequently write about.
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The U.S. Federal Trade Commission’s game of whack-a-mole with Windows tech support scammers continues.
The FTC and the State of Florida recently announced the temporary shut down of several businesses in two new cases of Windows tech support scams. The two cases involved scams that bilked “tens of thousands” of Windows PC owners out of more than $120 million, the FTC says.
For at least four years now, scam artists have been trying to pull one over on gullible computer users with phony tech support calls. The FTC said its latest operation was the third such case since 2011. More are sure to come since putting together a scam like this is relatively cheap compared to the potential million dollar windfall.
PC users need to be wary of scams like these or risk falling prey to them. We’ve included a few tips that should help you stay scam free.How the scam works
Previous scams involved cold-calling customers over the phone and then convincing them their computers were riddled with malware. This time around, however, the scammers had to wait for a user to download a bogus desktop program.
Usually people are enticed to download these phony apps with promises of improved security or performance for their PC. Then after they download a trial version, the app runs a scan and discovers non-existent errors on the PC.
To fix the phony errors, the user has to purchase the full version of the scam program, which can be priced anywhere from $29 to $49, according to the FTC.
But it doesn’t stop there. Once the victim has purchased the full version, the software prompts them to call a toll-free number to activate the software.
After calling, the victims are shunted to telemarketers who convince their targets to give them remote access to their PCs. The call center people then show victims various screens on their own computer and claim there are serious problems with their PC.
At this point, telemarketers try to sell more phony goods such as extra security software and tech support services that can cost up to $500.Protect yourself
While the scams can do some serious damage to your wallet, they are easily avoided if you follow a few simple tips.
First, never download an app to your PC that promises better security or improved performance on an impulse. Yes, there are some legitimate programs that can boost performance in minimal ways, and of course you need some kind of security program.
But as the saying goes, “the best things in life are free.” These days there’s little reason to pay for security software with so many third-party free options out there such as Avast, AVG, and Microsoft’s own Windows Defender built into the latest versions of Windows. Our guide to building the ultimate free PC security suite can help.
If you’re thinking about grabbing some performance boosting software, check it out before you download. Do a little research, such as looking for reviews or recommendations on sites like this one.
Second, never believe a website that says your PC is having problems. If you’re concerned your PC may have an issue or some new program you don’t recognize says you have a problem, get it checked out in person.
If you live near a Microsoft Store, try the retailer’s Genius Bar-like service called Answer Desk that will check out your PC for free. Otherwise your local PC repair shop can help, and paying a legitimate service provider is a lot cheaper than paying a scammer. Of course, asking a geeky pal for help is always an option, too.
Finally, keep in mind that these kind of scams have grown beyond PCs. In January, security firm Malwarebytes discovered a tech support scam targeting mobile devices. In those cases, the call centers were cold-calling prospective victims posing as tech support specialists responding to supposed problems. Similar scams try to entrap users with unsolicited email.
If you receive a cold call or an unsolicited email regarding tech support, do not respond. Just hang up the phone! More importantly, no matter how convincing they seem do not hand over personal information such as your name, address, or payment information.
As with most scams, as long as you keep your wits about you and use common sense online, you’ll be fine.
What happens when search engine spiders get lost? They cannot figure out what way to go on your site.
They sometimes get confused or other sites are sending them to another way to get to the same page on your site.
Some servers use mod_dir which causes additional issues by redirecting the domain without a training slash to the domain with a trailing slash so chúng tôi redirects to chúng tôi
It is very rare that this ever causes an issue. But, it is a reason when link building that you should always use the trailing slash in a link you add. It is the proper way to link to a site. Ever notice how the Open Directory and many other directories require their editors to add the trailing slash?Canonical means the “Authoritative Path”.
This is how you tell the Search Engines that these are the pages of your site. Since you are essentially talking to robots, you need to take extra precautions because robots “do not think”. If a robot is caught in a loop or sees pages that are actually the same but have 3 to 6 different paths to get to, it will consider these additional pages.
Canonical issues can take many forms and problems with them are becoming rare thanks to sitemap programs and the increasing awareness of the factors. Yes, they do still exist and can be caused by an webmaster that has no knowledge of the SEO factors involved in developing proper website architecture.Duplicate Content Issues
Duplicate pages are also caused by using the same contact form with different dynamic variables. So a form may be contact.asp?id=california and the same form may also be contact.asp?id=new york. This means that Google sees the exact page with different ways to get to it and treats it as spam.
The simple fix for this is a rel=”nofollow” tag or banning chúng tôi wildcards in the chúng tôi file. This is becoming a common task on many dynamic sites, I have added this here because we can consider this a potential canonical trigger as the path becomes duplicated.
Relax! There are many simple fixes:
Always program the site to be friendly by using Absolute Links when developing navigation and adding links to internal pages of your site. Absolute links can also help in preventing automated content stealing, which sites try to own your content by and ranking with it, and “theoretically” it is extremely possible that a third party site can take your content and rank for it while you get hit as a duplicate page and no longer rank for it.
Use the rel=”nofollow” in the href tags of pages that go to a secure server, and or pages that go to dynamic forms. This tells the spiders right off not to count the pages as a link, in effect helping them understand the priority of the page from the href relevancy command. This can help increase internal page quality as well by removing the potential trigger for “Mad Lib” spam.
Use a Canonical URL redirect fix. I have listed many here in my 301 and Canonical Redirect Tutorial. I am still looking for the Mac WebSTAR Canonical version which would be appreciated.
Robots.txt out files and wildcards. Not all search engines use the wildcards. Yahoo does, MSN does, Google does as well these may be best used bu identifying the robot and the path.
It’s always great to learn all avenues that can help secure the proper architecture of websites.
Alan Rabinowitz is the CEO of SEO Image, a New York based SEO and Internet Marketing company which focuses on corporate branding and positioning in search engines.
I just happened to call my parents at the right moment. Worried that my dad wasn’t picking up his cell phone, I tried my mom’s cell which she picked up immediately.
“Dad is on the phone with someone because our Apple ID has been hacked,” she frantically told me while telling my dad that I was on the phone. In the background, I could hear my dad shouting at my mom to get me off the phone which was highly suspicious for parents who always love hearing from me.
Following an extremely busy beginning to what was assumed to a regular call, I heard that my parents were all going to be scammed using a computer hack. How on earth did this occur? My mother and daddy know how to protect themselves from scams!
My father answered a call from an unidentified number on his mobile phone out of a caller claiming to be Apple support. She proceeded to attempt and find private information out of him to get his PC.
My father was just a few keystrokes away from letting her access his computer. These activities might have emptied their bank account and led to identity theft. Luckily, my telephone interrupted the harm she had been going to unleash.
With 1,855 robocalls put every 2nd last year, my parents are not alone. Their story could have occurred to some of our friends family and nearest and dearest. Almost 30 million people have been scammed from the 58 billion robocalls made annually.
Scams and undesirable robocalls will be the One complaint to the FCC. They cost Americans over $10 billion annually. With coronavirus worries, scammers are preying on customers’ rising health and fiscal anxieties. Americans have lost more than $80 million into COVID-related scams annually and it is only getting worse! Coronavirus scams increased 70 percent from only May to June.7 Ways to protect yourself from scam calls
But how do you protect yourself from scam calls? Here are 7 pointers to help thwart robocall strikes on your mobile device that may result in telemarketing fraud.1. Be Skeptical
Technology makes it easy for scammers to fake caller ID information. These days they often disguise communication from an unknown source as being from a known, trusted source. This is called spoofing. Spoofing allows scammers to mimic real names and phone numbers of individuals to make the number looking familiar increasing the likelihood that you’ll answer the phone.
Protect yourself from scam calls by always being skeptical. If you don’t know the name or the phone number of the person calling, don’t answer.2. Hang up on robocalls
Sometimes I have gotten a call in which the caller ID pops up with the title of the children’ college, a physician’s office I have seen, or another famous location. Bright scammers telephone numbers in hopes we will answer the telephone out of a caller we might understand.
This makes it hard to differentiate between a valid telephone versus a robocall at the split second that you are taking a look at your telephone deciding whether to reply or not.
Also read: Top 7 Work Operating Systems of 20233. Protect yourself from scams with help from your wireless provider
T-Mobile, Metro from T-Mobile, and Sprint customers automatically get Scam Shield, a pair of safeguards that will help safeguard them from scammers. Scam Shield prevents individuals with free scam identification and penalizing for each client.
Scam Shield also contains attributes like free, improved Caller ID which provides you more info about who is calling. T-Mobile clients can protect their private information with a free next amount that retains your private number private. Clients may also benefit from a completely free number change and completely free ID monitoring.
Scam Shield is designed to Prevent scammers in their Paths using 6 Shield tools Which work to Give information about who Is calling:
Free scam identification and scam blocking — Suspicious calls are flagged, and customers can turn on scam blocking to never see those calls again.
Free, Enhanced Caller ID— If we know who’s calling, you’ll know who is calling. And with new improvements, you’ll know when the number is verified as coming from a real person or business.
Free Second Number— T-Mobile PROXY is a second phone number to keep your personal number personal.
Free Number Change— If your personal number become a spam magnet, get a clean slate with a new number.
Free Be ID Aware Service— Get ID monitoring and alerts for 12 months from the experts at McAfee, available for a limited time.4. Don’t give away any information
Also read: Top 6 Tips to Stay Focused on Your Financial Goals5. Educate yourself about recent scams
Protect yourself from scam calls from receiving the newest ideas and suggestions about scams in the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The Consumer Info Scams segment on the FTC site can allow you to learn about the latest scams and comprehend potential warning signals. To get this information you may go straight to their site or register to possess FTC email updates delivered right to your inbox.6. Put yourself on the national do not call registry 7. Report scams
Should you see a scam. Your reports help safeguard others from scams, the FTC and other law enforcement research scams, and attract crooks to justice.
Mac apps often request some kind of “permissions” during their installation. Since Apple expanded macOS Mojave’s Security and Privacy permissions, requests have only increased. What does this mean when an app wants “Accessibility permission?” Should you grant apps these permissions?Accessibility
This permission is the most commonly requested, so our description starts here.
Accessibility permissions give apps extremely broad access to your Mac. Apps with this permission can access the entire system and control other apps. It’s like Full Disk Access plus Automation.
This was created for apps that help people with disabilities. Soon, other apps started asking for the same access. Some developers treat it as a blanket permission. It means the app will always have the access it needs. The app might not even need broad access, but developers request it to keep macOS from obstructing their app.
Malware could exploit this access to log activity or inject attacks. That’s why Accessibility permissions require a special feature. The user must turn on an app’s Accessibility access manually in System Preferences.
Here are some examples of what apps do with their access:
TextExpander inserts text, images, and other content into any document.
Alfred allows clipboard monitoring, snippet expansion, and simulating key events.
Dropbox updates the Finder UI with badges and progress icons.Location
This allows apps to request your current location. Because your Mac lacks a GPS chip, it accesses a database of Wi-Fi router locations. With this, Location Services grabs your location. Your IP address can also help estimate your location.Camera and Microphone
These permissions are nearly the same. As the name says, they allow access to the FaceTime camera and microphone. System permissions, which also control file access, handle it. This prevents the application from accessing these resources unless explicitly permitted.Photos
Permits the application to access the Photos database. This is different than accessing the camera. It’s also not as broad as accessing all the photo files on your Mac. It only permits access to the Photos.app database. If you have photos stored outside the chúng tôi database, the app will not get permission to access them with this setting.Calendar, Reminders, and Contacts
Like Camera and Microphone, these permissions provide the same control mechanisms over different areas of your Mac.
Contacts permission includes any contact information stored in chúng tôi Typically, messaging and email apps use this to access your contacts to send messages or identify senders.
Reminders allows access to the content of the Reminders app. This is used by ToDo apps and task managers to integrate with Apple’s default system.
Calendar permits access to the content of events in chúng tôi Schedule apps use this to view and edit calendar events.Automation
This allows apps to control other apps. Normally, macOS “sandboxes” applications. This limits what the apps can touch. By default, apps can only access their own data. Automation lowers the sandbox walls slightly, permitting an app to change how other apps work. Automation permissions grant access to specific apps, not every app.Full Disk Access
This permission allows apps to read, write, and modify files anywhere on your disk. Essentially, this permission provides arbitrary access to files throughout the system. It includes data in Mail, Messages, Time Machine backups, Home, and certain admin settings for all users on the Mac. This access is also included in the Accessibility permissions, so few apps request it.Analytics
Controls how much data an application sends “home” to its developers. This can include metadata, as well as your Mac’s hardware and software configuration, your location, and iCloud data. The permissions allow you to decide who can get the data.Advertising Conclusion
Permissions allow you to control what happens on your Mac. By requiring a user okay before accessing sensitive data, macOS works with you to keep access limited. Carefully consider what you’re giving up before giving an application permissions on your Mac. You should only allow it with trusted apps.
Alexander Fox is a tech and science writer based in Philadelphia, PA with one cat, three Macs and more USB cables than he could ever use.
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Plus a clever Facebook cover image trick
With ever lowering Facebook reach, fan acquisition on Facebook is increasingly less of a desirable goal. Yet I do believe that the platform still has a major role to play for many brands, not least because of the ubiquity of the platform, but also for its simply awesome targeting potential.
Page admins have moaned long and hard about decreasing reach – how hard it is to reach fans which many have paid to acquire. With the end of like gating and further algorithm changes afoot in January (Facebook will drastically reduce the reach of Pages that have a tendency to post promotional content with limited “context”), it is most certainly time to re-think the way you use the platform, particularly if your focus to date has tended towards those vanity metrics of big fan numbers.
The “Download a Whitepaper” incentive has been used in B2B marketing successfully for many years and I’ve been trying a similar approach on Facebook for my B2C Page Musicademy. By creating an irresistible offer we’ve been able to data capture many email addresses and also delight users with a free gift that is genuinely useful (and neatly showcases our product range in a “try before you buy” format).
I’ve been trialling two different approaches. The first uses a cover image trick that I’ve only ever seen one other brand try. This approach is aimed at existing fans with a view to data capture of their email address.Facebook cover image trick
Here’s how the cover image looks:
So far so good. We’ve drawn attention with a great offer and got the user off Facebook and onto a landing page of your choosing. What’s next?The landing page
The landing page takes users to an Infusionsoft data capture form. Infusionsoft (view demo here) is the leading sales and email marketing software for small businesses and I can’t recommend it highly enough. This form is actually hosted on my website but there are plenty of other options including MailChimp data capture devices and a host of Facebook apps.
By completing this form, users are then sent to a landing page with the promised 40 free lessons, but any tick besides the instruments of interest triggers an email sequence full of great content (and a little info about products). I’ll write a more detailed post about my approach to email and content marketing using Infusionsoft another week.
Note that there are a number of good practice tips to share from the landing page above.
I’m only capturing the minimal amount of information I need – first name because I then personalise subsequent emails, email address (obviously) and some simple ticks to identify areas of interest
Double opt in – this is not essential in Infusionsoft so I’ve not made it a necessary part of the sign up process but does mean that we get the important double opt-in for many of the new users
Share the love – this would actually be better as a mail:to link but you can see how I’m using every opportunity to spread the word about Musicademy
Personalised content – by giving users the chance to tell us more about themselves they end up with emails containing content far more relevant to them than the standard “spray and pray” newsletters
Reassurance about no spam policy
Follow buttonsData capture apps
Shortstack, Woobox, TabSite and many other app providers will allow you to create a Facebook app which enables data capture. Remember that Facebook apps do not work on mobile unless you use a workaround such as this one we created using the Facebook app StaticHTML by Thunderpenny Software which will provide a link that will work on mobiles.
Again, some good practice to draw from this example:
No space within the 20% rule for the logo so I’ve ditched it – the brand name and favicon are clear at the top anyway
You are allowed text on product shots. Otherwise try to use the images to convey the message as I have done here with the silhouette image of the instruments
This ad was created in Power Editor which gave me lots of control over the content in the various places on the ad as well as the call to action button. Previously this type of ad was only available as a result of going through the somewhat laborious “Unpublished” or “Dark post” route. Now it’s just the standard method of ad creation and thankfully offers an edit facility without recreating the content from scratch
Limited repetition of text. I’ve made each of the areas (Text at the top, Headline, Link Description and Display Link) convey a relevant but non repeating message. Whilst there may be a case at times for repetition, I think often it is better to have no text than repeating textWant to learn more? Come and see Marie teach live
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