Use Caution With Email Attachments

Many familiar attachment types can be used to deliver viruses –  including PDFs, Word documents, zip files and PowerPoints. Recent examples have come in as invoices or bills, but they can also appear to be normal documents from people you know.

The US Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) has many good recommendations for keeping yourself and your computer protected:

https://www.us-cert.gov/ncas/tips/ST04-010

OIT has recommendations as well:

  • if you are even remotely unsure about a suspicious email, forward it to spam@williams.edu. OIT staff will evaluate it and respond accordingly. We don’t mind, honest, and early detection of campus wide threats can make a big difference!
  • Be wary of unsolicited attachments, even from people you know – Just because an email message looks like it came from your mom, grandpa, or college president doesn’t mean that it did. Many viruses can “spoof” the return address, making it look like the message came from someone else.
  • Trust your instincts – If an email or email attachment seems suspicious, don’t open it, even if your anti-virus software indicates that the message is clean. Attackers are constantly releasing new viruses, and the anti-virus software might not recognize it.

Thanks for your assistance.