Do Not Encourage Bad Habits
I was on Facebook today and saw multiple people sharing “Touch the sentence inside the parentheses.” If that statement doesnt send blood cuddling chills down your spine this blog post is for you.
All the time I sit down at someone computer to help them with something only to realize they have installed something that takes over their search. Who knows what keylogger and other evils are also going on. What happened? They clicked on something not realizing it would install malware on their computer.
Teach Students to Analyze Before They Click
I took a defensive driving course as a teen. They told us “assume everyone is out there to hit you.” Assume everything you click on the internet and especially from emails is out to get you.
Raise your hand if your email or Facebook has been hacked and it sent out emails on your behalf. (Everyone sheepishly raises their hand including me.)
Hyperlinked texts are great but they hide the destination of what you’re clicking on. Before clicking on a link make sure you hover and look in the bottom left for where it takes you.
Be on the lookout for spoofing. Assume the link is evil and like a detective you’re going to prove it. A common way to trick you into clicking is to make a similar but misspelled site. It’s close enough that if you’re not paying super close attention you’ll think it’s safe when it isn’t.
ORG is NOT Safe
Any idiot or scammer can buy an .org URL. Go to http://domains.google.com and buy a website for $12. Org addresses are available for the same $12. So are a bunch of other dot’s.
Check that the dot com, org, us, net, ninja, etc…. Is what it should be. PayPal is http://PayPal.com so if it says PayPal.net or something besides dot com… Do not click on it!!!
If your bank or any account tells you to go to their site, do NOT click on the links in the email. Go directly to the site to avoid clicking on spoofing links.
Remember, NO COMPANY OR ORGANIZATION ASKS FOR PERSONAL INFO VIA EMAIL.
Beware What You Share
Maybe, maybe not it is safe to click between the parentheses. Doesn’t matter. You should never want to find out. Sharing viral posts on Facebook and the like is exactly how bad things happen. You pay for that cute animation or whatever with your personal information being hacked or a virus downloaded to your computer.
Please do not share on Facebook things that encourage unsafe behavior. Even if it’s safe. Asking people to blindly click on what looks like hyperlinked text….YIKES! Let’s say it is totally safe, now everyone who clicked on it thinks this is okay. Next time something is shared they will remember how fun it was the last time except this time they are a victim.
Encourage good digital citizenship when you share.