2/03/2015

New Email Scam - Wire Transfer Requests from your own Co-Workers

The first new email scam we've seen this year has occurred with two of our clients so far. It's a wire transfer email scam, but what makes this one so dangerous is that the emails appear to be coming from your coworkers or even your managers. We found this CRN article and it turns out many businesses were hit with this at the end of 2014.
"Over a three month-period from October to December, a total of $179.7 million was bilked from nearly 1,200 victims using a tactic the FBI calls Business E-mail Compromise. Businesses that routinely make wire transfer payments are at the greatest risk of being targeted in an attack...
'Some phishing attacks target high-level business executives, compromising their email accounts to send a bogus message to an employee within the company responsible for processing requests. Attackers also have used hijacked email accounts from other employees to send bogus email messages requesting the fraudulent wire transfer,' the FBI said"
Since the emails come from a name and email address the victim commonly communicates with, they don't raise the usual red flags.
"'Fraudulent email requests for a wire transfer are well-worded, specific to the business being victimized, and do not raise suspicions to the legitimacy of the request,' the FBI said."
You may be thinking, "But I'm a small business, why would I be a target?"
"Victim organizations vary in size from small businesses with a few employees all the way up to large enterprises."
This new form of phishing is called "spear phishing" - when the email in question appears to be from an individual or business that you know.
"The spear phisher thrives on familiarity. He knows your name, your email address, and at least a little about you."
This scam also falls under "social engineering," which is defined as the "psychological manipulation of people into performing actions or divulging confidential information." This is a very helpful guide to recognizing "Social Engineering Red Flags" from KnowBe4.com (view the PDF).

https://www.baroan.com/images/stories/documents/SocialEngineeringRedFlags.pdf

In one of the instances we witnessed, the phishing email had used the exact email address of a client's employee but the client's domain name spelling was off by one letter. You may not notice details like that on first glance, but closer examination will reveal little details like that which are slightly off.

How can you avoid the scam?
  • Always verify wire transfers over the phone or in person.
  • Setup your email so any outside emails are tagged as "[EXTERNAL]" in the subject (This can be done by Baroan or your network admin.)
  • Study the Social Engineering Red Flags!

1/26/2015

Snow Storm Information

Valued Baroan Clients,

Safety first for everyone! Baroan Technologies’ plan for the impending storm is for our staff to work remotely on Tuesday (1/27/14). We will be available as always at 201-796-0404 from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, and at help@baroan.com. All onsite appointments for Tuesday are cancelled and will be rescheduled.

Last year we installed generators at our office building to help us provide uninterrupted support to our clients. In addition to the generators, we have replicated our infrastructure at a data center so in the event that the power and generators fail we will still be up and running. As with Hurricane Sandy, we will be able to continue fully supporting our clients.

For our monitored clients, we will continue to monitor your networks as usual and alert you if we become aware that anything is offline.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Google+ for general updates as well as information on any power and telecommunication outages we become aware of in your area.

Thank you and stay safe,
Baroan Technologies

1/08/2015

The MSP Minute: Security with Baroan Technologies

We were excited when IBM approached Baroan Technologies to be the first MSP featured in their new MSP Minute series. The focus of this 60 seconds is network security, which is something Guy knows a lot about after 17 years as an MSP.







Watch the video below to hear Guy explain why he can count on one hand the number of properly configured networks he's seen, and why countless businesses assume they're secure when they're really not.



Wondering if your business is secure? Setup a meeting with Guy.

8/29/2014

How to Strengthen Your Password


how to strengthen your password

We recently posted The Washington Post's Eight smart ways to strengthen your password
on Baroan's Facebook page and it was one of our most popular of the month. Since the list is in video form, we've transcribed it below and added further information from a few additional sources.

8/22/2014

Baroan Technologies awarded Tier 1 Status by Microsoft

As a member of Microsoft’s SMB Champion program, Baroan Technologies has been awarded Tier 1 status which is the highest level awarded by Microsoft. In the New York metro area, there are only 10 other companies that are Tier 1.

We’ve installed and configured Office 365 for over 70 businesses as a Microsoft SMB partner. We'd love to help you develop your cloud strategy. Give us a call.



7/29/2014

Baroan Guide to Avoiding Malicious Software

Phishing Scams




Malware

Avoiding it



  • Don’t open attachments in emails unless you know who sent it and what it is. Opening attachments — even in emails that seem to be from friends or family — can install malware on your computer.
  • Download and install software only from websites you know and trust. Downloading free games, file-sharing programs, and customized toolbars may sound appealing, but free software can come with malware.
    • New research shows rise in "deceptive downloads" - legitimate downloadable programs (usually free) that cybercriminals bundle with malicious items.
  • Minimize "drive-by" downloads. Make sure your browser security setting is high enough to detect unauthorized downloads. For Internet Explorer, for example, use the "medium" setting at a minimum. 
  • Use a pop-up blocker and don't click on any links within pop-ups. If you do, you may install malware on your computer. Close pop-up windows by clicking on the "X" in the title bar.
  • Resist buying software in response to unexpected pop-up messages or emails, especially ads that claim to have scanned your computer and detected malware. That's a tactic scammers use to spread malware.

Signs your PC is infected

Monitor your computer for unusual behavior. Your computer may be infected with malware if it:
  • slows down, crashes, or displays repeated error messages
  • won't shut down or restart
  • serves up a barrage of pop-ups
  • displays web pages you didn't intend to visit, or sends emails you didn't write
Other warning signs of malware include:
  • new and unexpected toolbars
  • new and unexpected icons in your shortcuts or on your desktop
  • sudden or repeated changing of your browser's home page
  • your laptop battery draining more quickly than it should

6/17/2014

Increasing Cryptolocker Email Traffic

Baroan Technologies recently received the following email from AppRiver, our email filtering service, regarding the Cryptolocker malware. We have written a few blog posts on Cryptolocker, which we began seeing in November 2013 and are still seeing it occur in our clients' environments as recent as this month.
URGENT MALWARE ALERT: INCREASING CRYPTOLOCKER TRAFFIC

AppRiver is currently seeing a lot of malicious email traffic containing the Cryptolocker malware that can encrypt your business's data. The bulk of this traffic is coming through trusted free file share programs disguised as voicemail messages or faxes. AppRiver is blocking all known variants of this traffic but the spammers are changing up the messages rapidly. It is incredibly important that you let your users know not to open unsolicited emails and download files without confirming their sources. It's also important that you back up your files frequently and, if you use a third-party back up system, make sure it will not overwrite your backup with the encrypted files.

As a reminder, Cryptolocker is an especially destructive virus that will encrypt all of your data. Cyber criminals then force you to pay to get the data back, with no assurance they will actually follow through if you do. For more information, please see this blog article: blogs.appriver.com

Sincerely,
Brian Haynes
Director of Channel Sales
One of the common Cryptolocker emails they've been seeing contains a DropBox link to retrieve a Zip file. AppRiver's blog post advises, "If something appears wrong or out of place avoid it!" We cannot stress this enough.