Protect Your Devices With Trend Micro This School Year {Giveaway}

Internet security is something that should be taken very seriously. I was a brand Ambassador for Trend Micro for a year as a “Digital Jones” family but even now, months after my contract ended, I still rely on them to keep my family safe. When I heard about their back-to-school sale I knew I had to share it with you because 1) it’s a great product 2) who doesn’t love to save money and 3) this is one of the most important back-to-school purchases you will make.

As you know, technology is changing daily, making it challenging for parents to keep up.  Parents are concerned not only with what their kids are sharing online, but also with what they are receiving and viewing online. Trend Micro want to help make parent’s lives easier.

Now through September 2, Trend Micro Titanium Maximum Security is only $44.95 (usually $89.95).  This software will protect up to 3 devices (laptops, desktop computers, tablets, smartphones, etc.), whether they are PC, Mac, or Android for an entire year: http://www.trendmicro.com/us/home/products/titanium/max-security/index.html

Here are just a few awesome features of Trend Micro Max Security:

  • Monitors and protects kids on social network websites like Facebook and Twitter
  • Restricts web content and access to desktop applications, and sets an access schedule for your kids
  • Identifies settings that may leave a family’s personal information vulnerable using the new Privacy Scanner For Facebook feature
  • Indicates dangerous links on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest, MySpace, Sina Weibo and Mixi

Trend Micro also offers a free 30 day trial so you can see how you like the software before you buy it:  http://www.trendmicro.com/us/security/products/index.html

GIVEAWAY:

One lucky reader will win Trend Micro Titanium Maximum Security software which will cover up to 3 devices for 1 year

HOW TO ENTER:

 {Do any or all of the following, leave a separate comment for each you do}

1) Leave a comment telling me why you want to win

2) Share this giveaway on a social network

3) Follow Trend Micro on Twitter

4) Follow me on Twitter

5) Leave a comment on another blog post

Giveaway ends September 2, 2013 at 11:59pm Central time. Must be 21 or older and a US citizen to win.

(Disclosure: As stated above, I was a Trend Micro Ambassador for a year but that campaign is now over. I was not compensated for this post.)

Internet Security Stats & How To Protect Yourself Online

Trend Micro shared the above stats with me as part of my participation in the year long Digital Joneses family study. I have learned so much about internet safety in the past months but every time they share statistics with me I am shocked by one or two of them. This month was no exception.

I couldn’t believe that 6% of people friend everyone that asks to be their friend on Facebook, even if they don’t know them! When I think about everything people post on their personal Facebook pages including where they are, phone numbers, addresses, and pictures the amount of private information that our “friends” have access to could be dangerous. The person you “friend” could be waiting for you to announce a vacation so they can find out when the perfect time to rob your home is. Another issue I have with Facebook are the pages that say you have to “friend” them to view the information on their page. You don’t know who is behind the page and I don’t think there is any reason you’d have to give them access to your personal information to join the page.

So what can you do to protect yourself online when it comes to the statistics above? Trend Micro suggests the following:

1) Manage your online accounts with secure passwords. They suggest using a phrase of random words that you can remember, instead of paraphrases or single words. Having passwords of at least ten to twelve characters is a good start and they recommend more characters for passwords that protect sensitive sites (like banks). You should also avoid using the same passwords for multiple sites, especially if it’s a password that has been cracked by hackers before.

2) Know and use the privacy settings of your social networking accounts and mobile apps. The security settings are consistently changing and new ones are being added on a regular basis so it’s important to pay attention to information that social networks share with their members and update your privacy settings accordingly.

3) Regularly back up your data. Computers contain documents and pictures that hold valuable content and memories. Backing up your data ensures that none of that is lost.

4) Install a security software in all your devices.Trend Micro goes to great lengths to identify online threats and make it easy for you to protect yourself and your family from them with Trend Micro™ Titanium™ Security. Titanium is easy-to-use, yet comprehensive protection for what you do online every day – emailing, socializing, surfing the web — and it won’t pester you with alerts and pop-ups.

(Disclosure: I have received technology and software from Trend Micro over the past months as a participant in the Digital Joneses campaign. I use Trend Micro software to protect my computer and my mobile devices.)

The Olympics, Scams & You

As one of the families in Trend Micro’s Digital Joneses campaign I get a new challenge each month that focuses on online safety. This month’s challenge has to do with internet scams that may come via email or be found on social networks. I get scams like this all of the time telling me that I’ve won money. I know better than to fall for any of these scams but people less familiar with the internet may not. According to Senior Threat Researcher Robert McArdle believes that “…attackers are still using these because these scams are still giving them successful margins. Social engineering has worked for years and there are little signs of that changing.”

Scammers will use large events to target people and the Olympic games, probably the largest sporting event in the world, is no exception. To help consumers identify possible scams they will be susceptible to, Trend Micro created a fun little quiz to determine which type of viewer they are of the Olympics. There are four “types” of viewers: The fanatic, the loyal supporter, the avid social watcher, and the curious observer.

I took the quiz and was not surprised to find out that I ended up being a “curious observer”. I am not a big Olympic games watcher because I honestly don’t have the time to watch the games. In past years I have watched the opening ceremonies and really enjoyed them but this year I wasn’t home to watch them. I hope in future years to introduce the boys to them.

After the quiz I read through Trend Micro’s ebook for “curious observers” of the Olympics. It told me that I should be on the lookout for search result fraud and social media fraud. Something that may look like a valid link to scores, medal counts, or videos of the games could really be links to sites that will infect my computer with viruses. The suggestion from Trend Micro was to go right to trusted sources when looking for information on the Olympic games. I thought this was a great idea since I tend to use search engines for information I am looking for. Here is a link to the official site: olympic.org.

To keep up to date on current scams that have been found in regards to the Olympics you can check out the Trend Micro blog. They have a large list of scams that have already been found. The most common seem to be sites that claim to be live streaming the games so be careful and check the sites you are watching the games on! Looking at them I probably wouldn’t know that they are not legit because some of them look very similar to the official site. Smartphone users beware as well because there are some fake Olympics apps that have been found in the Google Play store.

Example of a fake website claiming to live stream the Olympics and sell tickets to the games!

Here are some more tips from Trend Micro:

Ignore any communication that asks you to reveal information, such as bank details or to pay any amounts of money up front. London 2012 will only ever use a secure website to collect personal or bank card details. Look for a padlock symbol in the browser window. The website address will begin with ‘https://’. If you click on the padlock, your browser will either give our full title (London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Ltd), or identify our sites as part of london2012.com. If you don’t see a padlock, or if the site name is not what you are expecting, then you should not enter personal or financial information into the page.

***
Have you seen any Olympic related scams yet this year?

(Disclosure: As part of the Digital Joneses campaign I have received software and technology products from Trend Micro. All thoughts are my own.)

Introducing The Digital Joneses Study

I have been waiting for about a month and a half now to share my exciting news and I’m finally able to– I will be participating in a study called “The Digital Joneses”. This study is organized by Internet security company Trend Micro and will follow seven bloggers {and our families} throughout the year as we complete monthly technology challenges. The goal of the study is to help improve and examine the struggles each family experiences with modern technology. Each challenge will identify and address one facet of digital security that is affecting living in a modern digitally-connected household.

Before I share about the first challenge I wanted to introduce the other bloggers that will be participating. They are Max from Attention Max, Lori from A Day In Motherhood, Stacie from The Divine Miss Mommy, Carol from NYCityMama, Michael from HighTechDad, and Stephanie from And Twins Make 5. You can learn more about the families here. I’m so honored to be part of such a wonderful group of successful bloggers!

For our first challenge, Sinisa and I had to take an online IQ quiz called: “Are You {Digitally} Smarter Than A 5th Grader?” Having been blogging since 2008 and online a lot longer than that I thought for sure I would ace the quiz. I ended up getting a score of 12 out of 16 and got the title of “security student”. Sinisa took the quiz and got an 8 out of 16 which was a “security wannabe”. Sinisa didn’t know the difference between “http” and “https” which I knew. On the flip side it asked to identify the Facebook logo and I got the question wrong. Seriously? I’ve been on that social network for years and have even gotten friends hooked on it but I couldn’t even pick the right logo out of four different ones. I also got a question wrong about networks that use cloud computing. I have heard of cloud computing but am not sure what exactly it is.

It’s obvious that I have a lot to learn about internet security still. Being online as much as I am it’s important to me to keep myself and my family safe as we work and play online. I look forward to the coming months and learning more about how I can do that.

How much do you know about internet security? Think you would get a better score than I did? Take the quiz and find out and then leave a comment below! I’d love to see how you all do on it.

(Disclosure: As stated above, this post is part of a study sponsored by Trend Micro that I am participating in. As a Digital Joneses family we are receiving assets to complete our challenges but all thoughts are my own.)