Mouseover Scams

Spammers are constantly coming up with new ways to trick even the most experienced computer user. Some spammers now have the ability to damage your computer even if you just hover over a link or image without clicking on it. They will often do so through PowerPoint attachments meant to look like invoices or charges. Once you have opened the attachment, just hovering over a link or image may cause malicious files or software to immediately start to download.

Eventually, some spammers might progress to putting those kind of dangerous mouseover links right in the text of emails. It is important to be aware of these kind of threats as they become more and more sophisticated.

How to protect yourself 
  • Make sure your Operating System and software is all up to date. Adding recommended patches and removing all old or unsupported software ensures that you are safeguarded against any potential security bugs.
  • Be careful opening any images or graphics from unfamiliar email addresses. By viewing your email in plain text mode, rather than html which displays images automatically, it will also be harder for spammers to track whether or not you have opened their links.
  • Turn on Protected View on Microsoft Office. This will ensure that a popup will appear if you hover over a link in PowerPoint and will ask if you would like to continue before downloading anything.

The IT Department also has software in place for your safety. Cylance Protect, the security software IT uses, helps prevent malicious exe and dll files from harming your computer.

Questions? Contact the Technology Support Center (TSC)
757-221-4357 (HELP) | [[support]] | Jones 201, Monday - Friday, 8:00 am - 5:00 pm