Policies & Security : Secure Computing Notices

  1. Exercise extreme caution when opening email attachments. Do NOT open attachments unless they are ones you expected to receive.
  2. Be particularly vigilant about attachments that appear to be image files.
  3. Do NOT click on web address links included in email messages unless you are sure they connect to trusted web sites. It is safer to either key a known web site address directly into the address line in your browser or to use the search feature of your browser to find the website.
  4. Keep your antivirus software and Windows operating system software up to date.

Have you ever been phished (fished)?

Phishing is a type of computer scam.  You get an email that appears to be from your bank or some other financial institution or reliable source.  What should you do?  They have a link on the email to find out the details about a charge on your credit card or they tell you that some of your records have been altered or deleted and they need you to send some information to them.


This link is actually either going to install some virus or spyware on your computer and everything that you send out is going to be infected or be redirected to an address that is not a legitimate business address this includes transactions done in SSL (secure sockets layer) where the lock shows on the lower right portion of your window.  In other words someone is trying to steal your personal information.  Two example that we have had on campus are the email from a Paypal look alike - exchange-robot@paypal.com saying that they have made a charge to your credit card for $175.00 and on 11/15/04 the one that appears to be from Suntrust bank - SunTrust Security Department requesting personal information.  Financial institutions will not request personal information through an email.  If you are in doubt, do not send an email, but call a branch office of the financial institution and find out from them.  See below for more scams.

Scams from new sources:

The message below is an example of a scam.  Links in emails may be to a source that wants to download malware or steal your identity.  This message was received via email on 11/11/2010, do not click on anything and delete the email.  The link is to the United Arab Emirates (eb2a.com).  All official UVa-Wise email will contain an individual staff member name, if you do not recognize the name please take the time to check if the email is legit.

Attn: Faculty/Staff/Students,



This message is from our Helpdesk Team to all webmail account owners.


We noticed that your webmail account has been compromised by spammers. It

seems they have gained access into our database and have been using it for

illegal internet activities.


The center is currently performing maintenance and upgrading its database.

We intend upgrading our Email Security Server for better online services.


To re-validate your mailbox and upgrade your account, please click below




In order to ensure you do not experience service interruptions, please

upgrade your account to prevent it from being deactivated from our





Thank you for using our online services.

Peterson-Tennant, Ginny

For Helpdesk Team


Don't allow files from unknown sources on your computer

Accepting files from others by clicking on links, opening attachments, by downloading files from web pages, or by other means is risky. Each time you encounter a new file, judge carefully the reliability of the file's source and contents before you open it or save it to your computer. It's best never to open an attachment unless you are absolutely sure of the credibility of both the sender and the contents of the sent material. Remember, malicious programs like viruses and worms can spoof the identity of an email message's sender. Just because the message says it's from someone you know doesn't mean that it really is.


For additional IT Security Advisories, please check out the following links or, if you are part of the UVa-Wise campus community, you may request assistance from Susan Herron at ext. 4641. These links are provided for your convenience and no responsibility for the content on these sites is implied or guaranteed.

Article specific links:

Helpful Resource Links for Safe and Secure Computer Use Education: