Greetings from Polar's E-Connections Team
you'll find the information contained in this newsletter to be a valuable
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It's a familiar scenario.
As April 15th approaches, the amount of tax-related spam increases. The
Internal Revenue Service has identified at least 105 different e-mail scams
featuring the fraudulent use of the government agency's logo and Web address.
While there are variations of the IRS e-mail scam (some promise a tax refund and others threaten an audit), your response should always be exactly the same — DO NOTHING EXCEPT DELETE IT. Do not click links in the body of the e-mail and do not provide any information. Remember, the IRS never sends e-mail messages to taxpayers. If they need to contact you about a tax refund or audit, they will do so by mail.
These e-mail messages are phishing scams aimed at bilking you out of personal information such as your Social Security number and bank account numbers. Scammers are capitalizing on the fact that more than half of all tax returns are now filed electronically. For example, a recent e-mail claiming to be from the IRS contained this message: "You filed your tax return and you're expecting a refund. You have just one question and you want the answer now. Where's My Refund? Access this secure Web site to find out . . ." When victims click on the link, they find an IRS site that looks official but is actually a fake.
The good news is that you can help shut down these schemes and prevent others from being victimized. If you receive a suspicious e-mail that claims to come from the IRS, relay that e-mail to this IRS mailbox: firstname.lastname@example.org. The IRS can use the information, URLs, and links in the suspicious e-mail messages that you send to trace the hosting site and alert authorities.
We all know how annoying
and troublesome it is to have to keep up with a changing list of passwords, but
passwords are our first, and perhaps only line of defense between our personal
information/privacy and the malicious hackers and evildoers in the world. This
makes passwords perhaps the most important security tool in our security
With the increased hacker activity lately keeping your passwords fresh and secure is ever more important. It is a very good idea to change your email password every month and to use a good strong password.
Changing your email password is easy. All you have to do is go to your PolarComm hosted webmail at https://webmail.polarcomm.com and log in with your email address and current password. Then you can click on Options, and Change Password.
It is a bad idea to use any common word or name for your password. Hackers have methods to find out if your email address is a legitimate email account, then they have programs that will try all the words in an unabridged dictionary and all the names in the
The best password is a random collection of at least six or eight characters that are a combination of upper and lowercase letters, numbers and punctuation. There is a very good website for randomly generating passwords at http://www.pctools.com/guides/password/. Another suggestion is to take two unrelated words and join them with some random numbers and punctuation (like yaCht*54orAnge yacht-54-orange) .
If you would like to know if your password is a strong one there is a nifty password checker at http://www.microsoft.com/athome/security/privacy/password_checker.mspx
I would recommend that the password for your public uses - like access to email and web sites - never be the same as the password you use to log in to your computer, and absolutely not what you use for banking or other important accounts. If those passwords are the same then if an intruder gains access to your email it will also be easy for them to break in to your computer.
People in places like military bases and secure government installations are proscribed from writing passwords down, but for personal computer users writing down a hard to remember password and keeping it in a safe place away from prying eyes can save you a lot of work when you forget what your password is.
There are many password management programs like zsafe (a free program you can get at http://z-soft.z-portal.info/zsafe/) or MyPasswordManager (http://www.mypasswordmanager.com/) that you can get to keep a safe encrypted list of your passwords on a disk, and then you only need to absolutely remember the one password to open the program and look up the others. Many people like to keep their password manager program on an inexpensive memory stick they can carry with them to whatever computer they might be using. Even though these programs are mentioned here, the PolarComm helpdesk cannot support them, and if you lose the password to open the program you are just out of luck, so guard that one and memorize it well.
Remember that if you use PolarComm dial-up internet service (not DSL) when you change your email password you are also changing the password you use to connect to dial-up internet.
At some time in the future there will be a solution where you can easily change your DSL or broadband password. Watch for news of this feature in future announcements. In the meantime if you want to change your DSL password please call the
If you would like to read more about passwords and how to use and manage them take a look at http://www.securityfocus.com/infocus/1537.
Question: When I reply to an e-mail, I
put my reply at the top of the message pane (above the sender's original
message). Most of my friends and family do the same thing. However, I
correspond with a few people who reply to e-mail messages at the bottom of the
message pane. Which way is correct?
Answer: Congratulations! You come out on top in this debate. Typing your e-mail reply message at the top of previously sent correspondence is considered proper etiquette. This just makes sense from an efficiency standpoint, especially when you have a series of messages going back and forth between two people. When the most recent reply is at the top of the message pane, it's right there in front of the receiver and ready to be read. By contrast, when the reply is placed at the bottom, the receiver has to waste time scrolling down the e-mail to find it.
http://nationmaster.com/index.php - Any idea what the least populated country in the world is? It's
March is Women's History Month
http://history.com/minisites/womenhist - According to the U.S. Census Bureau, women now outnumber men in this country (152 million compared with 148 million). If women of the past are any indication, today's women will continue to make valuable contributions in every field. This site celebrates Women's History Month with a look at groundbreaking American women throughout the years. For example, did you know that Victoria Chaflin Woodhull was the first female presidential candidate in 1872? Check out the list of Firsts in Women’s Achievement, the History of Women's Suffrage, and the National Women's Hall of Fame. It's an inspiring tour through the lives of amazing women.
Laughter on Ice
http://bladesofglorymovie.com - For the first time in the history of the sport, two men (Will Ferrell and Jon Heder, star of Napoleon Dynamite) compete as a figure skating pair. That's the premise behind this lighthearted comedy from DreamWorks, which promises to spin, lift, and jump its way through laugh after laugh. (The skating costumes alone are worth a chuckle.) See the trailer at this site and register for updates on special events and promotions.
Wealth of Money Tools
http://smartmoney.com/worksheets - Different stages of life generate different types of financial decisions. Should I buy or lease a car? How much house can we afford? How much should I save for college? How long will my money last once I retire? This site contains a broad range of step-by-step financial worksheets to help you find the answers you need. It's easy to use and a smart resource for making informed choices about buying, saving, investing, and borrowing.
Join the Fun of Fantasy Baseball
http://www.mlb.com/mlb/fantasy/wsfb/info/index.jsp - The free fantasy baseball game, MLB.com Open, starts a new season on April 2nd. So now's the time to join the fun and compete for the $10,000 prize. The easy-to-play game is designed for fantasy participants of all skill levels so anyone can take a swing at it. Play with your friends in your own private league or test your skills as an individual against a random group of eleven other participants. Get complete contest rules and register online, then check out the site's stats on team records, players, draft action, and more.
As a result of the U.S.
Energy Policy Act of 2005, Daylight Saving Time (DST) is set to begin three
weeks earlier this year on March 11th. (Congress decided that more early
evening daylight would translate into energy savings.) Most
To help you "spring ahead" this year without stumbling, just follow these steps:
System's Clock On PC
If the time on your computer is incorrect, it may still be necessary to reset the clock on your system. To do this, follow these steps.
For information on updates for your systems, go to this web page: http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=305056
Macintosh users running Mac OS X 10.4.5 or later are good to go. No update is needed. For some previous systems, there is an update linked to that page. Download and follow its instructions.
We hope you found this
newsletter to be informative. It's our way of keeping you posted on the happenings
here. If, however, you'd prefer not to receive these bulletins on a monthly
basis, click HERE.
Thanks for your business!
The E-Connections Team
110 4th St E
Park River, ND 58270
(We have used our best efforts in collecting and preparing the information published herein. However, we do not assume, and hereby disclaim, any and all liability for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions, whether such errors or omissions resulted from negligence, accident, or other causes.)
Cornerstone Publishing Group Inc.
Trademarks: All brand names and product names used in this eNewsletter are trade names, service marks, trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.