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Cyber cafe users are more vulnerable

Date: January 07, 2009

New Delhi: As cases of email frauds grow in India. It is better to be suspicious of any mails that ask for personal information, even if it might look legitimate. That applies to those which may come, you may think so, from your trusted banker.

A cyber security veteran told TOI: “Mails from banks asking for personal information are flooding Indian inboxes, most of which are fake. Most legitimate banks follow a policy of not asking personal information through e-mail. If needed, they will send letters or call you up. Whenever you get such a mail, confirm with the banks helpline number before opening it.”

Cyber security whizkid Ankit Fadia added: “You must have two different email addresses with separate passwords—one that is your official one and the other which you can use for social networking sites like Orkut or for online websites and blogs. This way, you know that the mails you receive in your unofficial email are mostly spam.” “You must be careful about mails with an interesting subject line, something you might instinctively click on. With such mails, the best bet is to just delete it if you don’t recognise the address.” Cyber cafes users are particularly vulnerable. Avoid using for sending a mail which has your personal details like PIN.

Fadia said: “With people, especially from smaller towns thronging cyber cafes, they are most prone to email fraud.Most of the cafes don’t have a strong anti-virus software installed due to economic reasons. This puts your email at risk from hackers.” Fadia notes that the presence of 1,600 and still-growing cyber cafes point to the dependence of huge sections on these ekiosks. He has simple advices for them. “Users must always log out or lock their computer when stepping away, even for a minute when at cyber cafes. Forgetting to do so leaves your account open to abuse.”

With sites like Facebook and Orkut becoming more and more popular everyday, be careful about the information you choose to share with others online. To avoid identity theft, always avoid making public your PAN number, your exact date of birth, your full address or your telephone number. TNN.

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