Secure Your Cyber Fortress | Corona, CA

Data BreachWithin the Department of Homeland Security lies the National Cyber Security Division. Every October they team up with the National Security Alliance to sponsor National Cyber Security Awareness Month, every October to focus on encouraging individuals to be cautious and to use protection while accessing the internet.

Seems every time we blink there is a new story about someone getting hacked or their identity stolen. And since we use the internet to connect with family and friends, to handle business and other services supported by online systems. Technology has prompted advancements in business, healthcare, music, government and many other industries. Unfortunately, as things become easier, they are also more prone to tampering. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to keep yourself, your assets and personal information safe online. So, in honor of National Cyber Security Month, take a look at your current online presence. If you find you could be too exposed, follow these helpful tips. They can not only help you to stay safe from identity theft and other account tampering, but it can also protect your family and friends:

  • Create strong passwords and keep them private by downloading apps and other resources available to protect your passwords from being stolen
  • Keep operating system, browser and other critical software up-to-date
  • Limit the amount of personal information you share online and use privacy setting to avoid sharing information widely
  • Be very cautious about what you receive or read online – if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is

Call Up & Running Computer Solutions in Corona, CA for help with your backup equipment at 951-737-8558. Learn more at our website at www.urcs.net.

Up & Running Computer Solutions proudly serve Corona and all surrounding areas.

What Is Cryptolocker? | Corona, CA

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Cryptolocker is a ransomware that’s designed by cyber criminals. This malicious malware attacks operating systems by encrypting all of the files from the machine. According to security researchers there has been an exponential growth in ransomware infections in the last year. Ransomware such as Cryptolocker and newer versions like Locky are now utilizing new methods to attack machines and encrypt their files before their victims have any idea. Tens of thousands of machines have been affected by this ransomware. These victims are either forced to pay a ransom or hope they have backup recent enough that they don’t lose too much data.

To help prevent your machine from being infected I have complied a few tips on how you can avoid this malicious malware.

  • Be sure to update your operating system and security software on a regular basis.
  • Always backup important data and keep it on unconnected storage.
  • Be sure to keep up with the most recent security patches and other fixes.
  • Always keep your anti-virus and internet security up-to-date.
  • Never open any attachments from suspicious email addresses.
  • If you suspect that your machine has been infected make sure to change network passwords and online account passwords immediately.

If your machine does become infected and you don’t have any backup copies of your data, paying the ransom not recommended. Paying the ransom is never a good solution, as this only turns the malware business into a thriving and profitable business.

If suspect that your machine has been infected with Cryptolocker or another type of malware, contact Up & Running Computer Solutions in Corona, CA at 951-737-8558 today.

Proudly serving Corona, Riverside, Anaheim, Irvine, Newport Beach, Tustin, and all surrounding areas.

Hacker Gives Away Email Account Information from Major Email Services

Data Breach

Just recently, hundreds of millions of hacked usernames and passwords for major email accounts are being traded in Russia’s crime circle.

There were 272 million stolen accounts, which included a majority of users of Mail.ru, Russia’s most popular email service, and a smaller amount Google, Yahoo and Microsoft users. It’s been said that this is one of the largest known hacks since cyberattack hit U.S. Banks and retailers about two years ago.

This cybercriminal ended up being young Russian hacker, and was mysteriously willing to sell the entire accumulation of stolen legal documents for 50 rubles, which equals less than a one dollar! Included in these stolen accounts were some usernames that appeared to belong to employee’s at large banks, manufactures and retailers in the U.S.

However, Hold Security researching from Milwaukee was able to get the hacker to give up the sensitive information after they agreed to post favorable comments about him in the hacker forum. Hold security has found that cyber threats in forums and chatrooms are what make up the internet’s criminal circle.

The following is a simple breakdown of the major services that were affected by the cyberattack and the number of stolen accounts:

  • Gmail-24 million
  • Microsoft Hotmail- 33 million
  • Yahoo- 40 million
  • Mail.ru ( Russian Popular Email Service)- 57 million

These numbers are astounding, and to think that this hacker was selling the entire cache for less than a dollar is mind blowing. This type of sensitive information is extremely “potent” if it ends up in the hands of a cybercriminal.

Be sure to protect yourself as much as possible from potential hackers, contact Up and Running Computer Solutions in Corona, CA 951-737-8558 to learn how to best protect you and your family from cyberattacks. Or visit www.urcs.net for information regarding the services we offer here at Up and Running Computer Solutions.

Up and Running Computer Solutions proudly serves Corona, Riverside, Anaheim, Irvine, Newport Beach, Tustin and all surrounding areas.

5 Most Notorious Computer Viruses in History

Many people all over the globe have gotten computer viruses in some fashion or form. For most, the computer is virus is simply a mild inconvenience, which typically just requires a cleanup and the installation of an antivirus software, that you may have been meaning to get around to but never did. However, in other cases, a computer viruses can be a complete and utter disaster, resulting you a various amounts of damage.

While many computer viruses can be easily taken care of, others have gotten out of control, causing millions, even billions of dollars in damage.  Not only are government’s and big companies at risk for these sort of attacks, you can be as well. Your computer could possibly get hacked by a computer virus too, giving hackers access to all of your personal information, wiping your hard drive, corrupting your data, and may even use your computer to spread the virus to the contacts you have stored in there.

The following is list of the five most notorious computer viruses in history, the effects they had on their victims

MyDoom

MyDoom is a worm that was launched in 2004, where it originally spread through KaZaA, a file sharing app, but then eventually spread to emails. In both cases, the user had be open the actual file in order to become infected. When the unsuspecting victim open the file or email, the malicious code downloaded itself and would steal their Outlook address book. From there, the worm spread by sending itself to the contact in the address book and coped of itself to any P2P programs to grow itself though that network.

This virus infected between 600,000 and 700,000 PCs, and cost $38 billion in damage. MyDoom also slowed the internet access worldwide by 10%, and reduced access to some websites by as much as 50%.

ILOVEYOU

The ILOVEYOU virus was launched from the Philippines in 2000, and was allegedly written by Onel de Guzman. Aside from the virus’s innocent name, ILOVEYOU is consider one of the most destructive computer viruses. The virus was an innocent looking email attachment labeled “I Love You”, and when opened it released a malicious program. This program would overwrite the users’ flies with copies of itself to allow it to spread even when the original program was removed, and would erase a number of different files.

Roughly one tenth of computers in 2000 were infected with ILOVEYOU, reaching 45 million people in just one day.  McAfee even reported that a majority of their fortune 100 clients were infected with the virus. ILOVEYOU caused $5.5 billion in damaged the first week, and cause $15 billion worth of damages all together.

Code Red

Code Red was launched in July 2001, and a second virus, Code Red II, was launched later in the year. This worm infected Windows NT and Windows 2000 by exploiting a buffer overload vulnerability.  This allowed the virus to deface and even take down some websites, one being the whitehouse.gov website and forced other government agencies to take done their public websites temporarily too. The worm spread by randomly selecting 100 IP addresses at a time and then would launch a denial service on them, which allows backdoor access to the server, allowing for a hacker to have remote access to the machine.

Code Red infected more than 359,000 computer systems in less than one day, and infected 1 and 2 million computers were infected overall.  This virus caused over $2 million in losses.

Melissa

This particular virus, Melissa, was created in 1999 by David L. Smith, and he claimed to have named the virus after an erotic dancer in Florida. This virus started as an infected Word Document that was posted on the alt.sex.unset group, claiming to be a list of passwords that several “adult” content websites. This for whatever reason, got people curious and when downloaded and opened, the macro was triggered inside and unleased its fury. Melissa would mail itself to the top 50 people in the users email address book, causing email traffic, while also disrupting the services of governments and large corporations. Also, if the day of the month matched the minute the virus would insert a Bart Simpson quote into the document that it sent.

Hundreds of websites were affected by this virus, and the Microsoft Corporation even had to disable all incoming and outgoing email. This virus infected an estimate of at least 100,000 computers, and cause $1.2 billion in damages and losses worldwide.

Slammer

The Slammer virus, also referred to as Sapphire, was launched in 2003. This internet worm caused a denial of service on some internet hosts and severely slowed down general internet traffic. As Slammer began to spread throughout the Internet, it doubled in size every 8.5 seconds! Like other viruses, it selected IP address at random to try to infect, eventually finding all susceptible hosts.

A number of banks were affected by the virus, one being Bank of American, crashing their ATMs. Additional victims that were affected were, a 911 emergency line in Washington State, Continental Airlines and multiple government websites. This internet worm caused 1.2 billion in damages and affected 200,000 PCs.

Be sure you’re protecting yourself and your machine from these notorious computer viruses and internet worms by installing an antivirus software and firewall. If you you’re experiencing problems with your computer suspect it may be a virus, contact Up and Running Commuter Solutions in Corona, CA at 951-7378558 or visit www.urcs.net for information regarding our services.

Up and Running Computer Solutions Inc. proudly serves Corona, Riverside, Anaheim, Irvine, Newport Beach, Tustin and all surrounding areas.

5 Common Myths About Computer Viruses and Antivirus Software


Nearly every office job requires the use of a computer, and while most people know how to operate one, they become lost when it comes to viruses and antivirus software.

However, this may be because there are several myths, misconceptions, and downright lies about virus and antivirus software that have thrown people off for years.

We here at Up and Running Computer Solutions have compiled a list of the most common myths and misconceptions about virus and antivirus software:

Myth #1: Error messages mean you have a virus.

People typically assume their computer has a virus when error messages begin to pop-up on their computer screen. That’s not always the case though, error messages can be caused by other computer problems such as a faulty hard drive, bugs in the software or even problems with your antivirus software. The same applies when your computer crashes, it’s likely caused by something other than a virus.

If you are getting error messages don’t go from A to Z, try checking for any updates and cleaning your hard drive up to see if it helps. You can also scan your computer just to be sure that your computer isn’t infected with a virus.

Myth #2: Computers can infect themselves with a virus.

As silly as that sounds, many believe this myth. It’s not uncommon for clients to bring in their computers claiming that a virus magically appeared on their system all on its own. However, viruses don’t magically appear on computers, users must physically open an infected program, or visit a website that hosts an actual virus and download it.

The best way to decrease the chances of your computer becoming infected with a virus is to avoid websites that contain illegal or “adult’ content. Although other websites can be just as capable of hosting a viruses as well, so be cautious when sketchy sites offer free downloads.

Myth #3: Every antivirus software is the same.

While many people know how to operate computers, they are often confused when it comes to the antivirus software. They want to protect their computer, but only download free antivirus software or keep the one that comes preinstalled on their new computer. Most of the free antivirus software only protect against known threats though.

The free antivirus software doesn’t always protect against scan social media walls, phishing attacks or offer any mobile protection, and if your computer does get a virus, it may be very difficult to remove. There are even paid program that vary in their protection capabilities, so be sure to do your research and install an antivirus that best suits how you use your computer.

Myth #4: All computer viruses are the same.

This completely untrue. There are some viruses or malware that allow hackers to steal information. Some spread advertisements or spam, while others are much more atrocious, destroying your entire operating system, leaving it useless.

There are new virus that released all of the time, and they are all different. The best thing you can do is to be aware, follow the best security practices, and use an effective antivirus software to protect yourself and your computer.

Myth #5: Firewalls protect against computer viruses.

Wrong again, a fire wall is not an antivirus software. Firewalls manage traffic traveling over a network, but they do not protect again viruses, malware or Trojans. A firewall is a part of a smart security plan, and you should have one, especially if you use public networks. However, as mentioned, it will not protect your machine from getting infected.

Whether you need a virus removed or worried about your network security, Up and Running Computers Solutions is the place to call. Give us a call at 951-737-8558 and our experienced team will be happy to help get your machine back up and running. Or visit www.urce.net for information regarding our services.

Up and Running Computer Solutions proudly serves Corona, Riverside, Anaheim, Irvine, Newport Beach, Tustin and all surrounding areas.

5 Tips for Shopping Safely Online This Holiday Season

Thanks to technology people can now shop from the convenience of their homes to local coffee shops using smart phones, tablets and other mobile devices. And with the holiday season already in full swing, many of us are doing so. Not only can online shopping save you time but it can also save you from encountering crowds of people that can suck your energy and holiday spirit dry. If you choose to do online holiday shopping, make sure that you have all your security measures in place. The holiday season is a time where cyber criminals are still very much at large. The following tips are recommended if you’re doing online holiday shopping this year:

Too Good To Be True- One common tactic cyber criminals use is using very low prices on popular items to lure potential victims in.

Use a Credit Instead of Debit– Use your credit card instead of your debit card because if your credit is used for something that you didn’t purchase, it’s easier to resolve issues with your credit card company than with your bank.

Credit Card Alert Features– Take advantage of your credit card alert features. These sort of alerts can alarm you when there’s abnormal activity and is very useful during the busy holiday season!

Safe Apps– For safe online shopping through apps you must make sure there are downloaded from a trusted source, such as the Apple Store or Android Market. Be sure to read through the various permissions the app is asking you to grant and note weather they make sense.

Stay Current– Keep your cyber information safe by ensuring that all of your security software is updated. Once an update is available, cyber criminals have all the information they need to attack your device.

Keep your personal information safe this holiday season by exercising caution when making online purchases. If your computer has contracted a virus while shopping online, contact Up & Running Computer Solutions in Corona, CA at 951-737-8558. For information regarding the services we offer visit our website at www.urcs.net.

Proudly serving Corona, Riverside, Anaheim, Irvine, Newport Beach, Tustin, and all surrounding areas.

Scottrade Data Breach Affects 4.6 Million Accounts | Cyber Security

Data BreachEarlier this month on October 1st, Scottrade announced that they had suffered a data breach affecting 4.6 million of their customers. Federal law enforcements informed Scottrade that they had been investigating the cybersecurity crimes involving theft of information from Scottrade and other finical services.

“Based on our investigation and information provided by federal authorities” Scottrade states in a post on their website “we believe the illegal activity involving our network occurred between late 2013 and early 2014, and targeted client names and street addresses.” The attackers were able to take contact details from the system they hacked into, despite the system having sensitive data such as Social Security numbers, it appeared that the contact information was the focus of the incident.

In the post the company also states “We have no reason to believe that Scottrade’s trading platforms or any client funds were compromised. Client passwords remained fully encrypted at all times and we have not seen any indication of fraudulent activity as a result of this incident.” But despite believing that Social Security numbers were not compromised, Scottrade will being offering those 4.5 million affected customer’s identity protection services.

Scottrade has now secured the intrusion point and has even conducted their own internal data forensics investigation on the incident with assistance from a top computer security firm, while also fully cooperating with authorities. As you can tell the company has since taken the appropriate action to strengthen their network defenses. Click Here to Read Scottrade’s Cyber Security Update.

If you’re interested in staying protected from cybersecurity risks, contact Up & Running Computer Solutions in Corona, CA at 951-737-8558 or visit our website at www.urcs.net for information regarding the services we offer.

Proudly serving Corona, Riverside, Anaheim, Irvine, Newport Beach, Tustin, and all surrounding areas.

National Cyber Security Awareness Month | Online Security

Online Security Protection Internet Safety

The National Cyber Security Division within the Department of Homeland Security and the National Security Alliance has sponsored National Cyber Security Awareness Month, every October since 2004. National Cyber Security Awareness Month is focused on encouraging individuals to be cautious and to use protection while accessing the internet. Weather we realize it or not the internet impacts our lives on a daily basis. We use the internet to connect with family and friends, to handle business and banking online and rely on it for many other services, like electricity and even transportation, which are supported by online systems. Technology has prompted advancements in business, healthcare, music, government and many other industries.

As technology keeps evolving, our lives are becoming easier and more connected than ever. Yet the more our lives become more connected through the internet, the more we become vulnerable for increased risks of theft, fraud and abuse. No one is immune to cyber risks at this point. As individuals, cybersecurity risks can threaten our identities, finances and privacy. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to keep yourself, your assets and personal information safe online. The following includes a few tips all internet users can take advantages of the month of National Cyber Security Month and throughout the year:

  • Create Strong passwords and do not share them with anyone.
  • Keep operating system, browser and other critical software’s up to date by installing updates.
  • Raise awareness by talking openly with your family, friends and community about Internet safety.
  • Limit the amount of personal information you share online and use privacy setting to avoid sharing information widely
  • Be very cautious about what you receive or read online – if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

For more information regarding online safety and what you can do to stay protected from cybersecurity risks, contact Up & Running Computer Solutions in Corona, CA at 951-737-8558 or visit our website at www.urcs.net to discover what services we offer.

Proudly serving Corona, Riverside, Anaheim, Irvine, Newport Beach, Tustin, and all surrounding areas.