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SPAM, Phishing and Virus Warning Email Advice

NCC utilise a filtering service which prevents the majority of spam and phishing emails from reaching users' accounts. Sometimes however emails can be delivered as not picked up by this tool. IT Security therefore offers the following advice for users:

Spam Emails: These messages are unsolicited and generally come from an email address that users will not be familiar with. Messages usually contain adverts for products for sale and links to websites which may contain ad ware, malicious programs or viruses. Users should simply delete any spam messages received and never reply to, or follow any instructions contained within such messages, including following any web links. Users should not "unsubscribe" to spam emails as this highlights to offenders that the account is active and will encourage further unwanted mails. Any attachments associated with these messages should not be opened. If users are receiving large quantities of spam email, they should contact the IT Security team via the following email address ict_security_group@nottscc.gov.uk.

Phishing Emails: These messages often appear to be from valid sources containing bank or building society names in the address, and can even include the company logo and contact details. The message will request personal information such as online banking passwords, pin numbers etc. Users should follow the same principles as with spam messages, do not follow any web links, submit any personal information and delete the message. If there is any concern over the nature of a specific email, please contact the IT Security team via the following email address: ict_security_group@nottscc.gov.uk.

Spoof Virus Emails: These messages generally warn of a deadly virus that will erase your hard disk were your PC to become infected and to forward the email to everyone in your address book. Spoof virus messages should not be forwarded as this increases network traffic unnecessarily. Messages should simply be deleted. Any valid virus risks would be addressed by IT Security, and any messages would come directly from this team. This is extremely unlikely however as we use anti-virus software that updates on a daily basis to combat the latest threats. If users are in any doubt with what to do with any emails received, they can contact any member of the security team, call the service desk, or forward emails to the following email address for us to investigate further: ict_security_group@nottscc.gov.uk.

07 April 2009

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