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SARS phishing scam from sun email

Monday, August 13th, 2018

If you receive an email with the subject “SARS eFilings” from any university email account, do not respond or click on the link. This is not a legitimate email from SARS.

The suspicious email is being sent from compromised staff email accounts informing users that “An EMP Statement of Account for the tax payer listed below has been issued by SARS” and you “need to log into the google doc with your correct details to view the document”. (as shown in example below):

It is important that you help us by spreading the word, informing us about suspicious mails and letting your colleagues and friends know about the scams. You are our eyes and ears, and your input, information and questions are extremely valuable.

When you click on links and provide your information on phishing emails, criminals will be able to gain access to your personal information. If you clicked on the link of this phishing email, immediately go to the www.sun.ac.za/useradm website and change the passwords on all your university accounts.

Remember that once the phishers lose control of one compromised account they might simply move over to another account and they might also close the website they were using once it is blocked by us and would use another one that looks and acts in the same way. Currently, the phishers are servers in Europe to launch their attacks. This is a common tactic with a spear-phishing attack such as this. 

To help us, please:

  • continue to watch out for mail like or similar to this and do NOT respond to it, click on links or provide your email address username or password
  • report the new phishing mail to the correct e-mail addresses of Information Technology Cyber Security using the method added to the bottom of this post
  • remember, just because a mail comes from a “student” or a “personnel” e-mail address and has university branding does not mean in any way that it is legitimate

If you have received mail that looks like this please immediately report it to the Information Technology Security Team using the following method: (especially if it comes from a university address)

  1. Start up a new mail addressed to sysadm@sun.ac.za (CC: help@sun.ac.za)
  2. Use the Title “SPAM” (without quotes) in the Subject.
  3. With this New Mail window open, drag the suspicious spam/phishing mail from your Inbox into the New Mail Window. It will attach the mail as an enclosure and a small icon with a light yellow envelope will appear in the attachments section of the New Mail.
  4. Send the mail.

IF YOU HAVE FALLEN FOR THE SCAM:

If you did click on the link of this phishing spam and unwittingly give the scammers your username, e-mail address and password you should immediately go to http://www.sun.ac.za/useradm and change the passwords on ALL your university accounts (making sure the new password is completely different, and is a strong password that will not be easily guessed.) as well as changing the passwords on your social media and private e-mail accounts (especially if you use the same passwords on these accounts.)

For more information on reporting and combating phishing and spam: http://blogs.sun.ac.za/it/en/2017/11/reporting-spam-malware-and-phishing/

[Information supplied by David Wiles]

 

Sending emails to large groups

Monday, August 6th, 2018

Many of our staff at the university need to send emails to external students or other large groups of people who are not part of the sun domain. If you are currently using Outlook distribution lists we recommend that you switch to the much more user-friendly and functional Sympa mailing list management platform. 

For many years the university has been using Sympa as mass mailing solution successfully. In fact, many of our staff and students use it to administer their lists. 

Sympa is a mailing list management (MLM) software and has its roots in the academic computing community in France. Its name, which is an acronym for Système de Multi-Postage Automatique (i.e. Automatic Mailing System), also means “nice” or “friendly” in French. 

We’re not sure exactly why the French decided to call their mailing list system “nice”, but we can confirm that it is “friendly” to use. By using Sympa as a platform for your group emails, you will have better control over your emails and access to handy functions such as:

  • appoint one or several moderators;
  • manage subscriptions and unsubscriptions;
  • add a shared document web space at the subscribers’ disposal;
  • answer questions from subscribers and potential subscribers about the list
  • read the list archive;
  • search in the message archive;
  • review members of the list;

As you can see, Sympa offers much more functionality than your normal Outlook distribution list. Any staff member can use Sympa, simply go to https://sympa.sun.ac.za/sympa.
If you need any assistance in setting up your Sympa distribution list, please send an email to help@sun.ac.za or call us at 808 4367.

Before you leave …

Tuesday, July 31st, 2018

You’ve packed up your office, said goodbye to your colleagues and you are ready for your new job. But what happens to your sun email address, your data or any electronic services you used while working at Stellenbosch University? We have a few tips and instructions. 

As soon as your active role as staff expires, all your electronic services also terminate. This process is necessary to maintain a healthy and secure network and to ensure that unused, dormant accounts are not used for nefarious purposes by cybercriminals.

In other words, from the date when your service at SU is terminated, you no longer have an active role at the university and you can no longer use university services. In this event, you will receive an email from helpinfo@sun.ac.za informing you that your username will expire.

To ensure that you are prepared in advance, we also suggest you do the following at least three months before you leave the university:

  1. Create a new email address for yourself (if you don’t have one already) There are various options, for example, Gmail or Yahoo.
  2. Activate your Out of Office function on you sun.ac.za Outlook mailbox and indicate in the message what your new email address is, in case someone needs to contact you. 
  3. If you use your @sun address for your banking, Facebook, DSTV or iCloud accounts or any other services or social media, change it to your new email address. We would also like to urge you to keep your work-related and private emails separate. Rather create a private email address for your personal correspondence.
  4. If you have any personal data on your electronic work devices or network storage (G: or H: drive), remove it and store it on your own external hard drive or online cloud storage, for example, Google Drive or OneDrive
  5. Make sure that your relevant work-related data is accessible for further usage by your colleagues and the university after you leave. However, do NOT give your password to colleagues when you leave the university as this poses a security risk.
  6. If you need any assistance, contact Information Technology and one of our technicians can assist you.

Students who are graduating or terminating their studies can find the necessary information on this pamphlet compiled by the IT HUB.

Warning: Phishing scam exploiting ABSA new logo

Tuesday, July 17th, 2018

Many of you use ABSA as your bank of choice, as well as making use of ABSA Bank’s Internet Banking facilities, so this warning might be of particular significance.

Earlier this month ABSA announced a new logo – part of its rebranding campaign – and almost immediately phishing scammers exploited this opportunity to continue their nefarious campaign of identity theft through phishing email attacks.

Several users have reported getting the following email – allegedly from ABSA – taking advantage of the new logo to target the bank’s customers in a phishing email scam by attempting to trick users to click on a link to take them to a fake website.

The scam email states that it comes from Absa CEO Maria Ramos, but it’s actually from an outside source and informs victims that “today marks a very significant day in the Absa journey”. The email uses Absa’s slogan, saying “We are also launching a new, fresh and vibrant Absa logo and identity that reflects our commitment to you, our customers”. Potential victims are then encouraged to click on their “New Absa eStatements” in PDF format. This is not a statement, but an HTML file which takes users to a phishing website.

Here is one example of the phishing e-mail which has already appeared in several University email accounts, as well as personal home email accounts:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As always, you should never respond to a suspicious looking email or message or click on a link in any suspicious looking email. Rather delete the email. No South African bank will ever contact customers and request sensitive information (card PIN, card CVV or online banking password) via email, telephone or SMS.

If you have received a phishing email, immediately report it to the Information Technology CyberSecurity Team using the following method:
 
1. Start up a new mail addressed to sysadm@sun.ac.za (CC: help@sun.ac.za)
2. Use the Title “SPAM” (without quotes) in the Subject.
3. With this New Mail window open, drag the suspicious spam/phishing mail from your Inbox into the New Mail Window. It will attach the mail as an enclosure and a small icon with a light yellow envelope will appear in the attachments section of the New Mail.
4. Send the mail.

IF YOU HAVE FALLEN FOR THE SCAM:
If you did click on the link of a phishing spam and unwittingly gave the scammers your username, email address and password  immediately go to http://www.sun.ac.za/useradm and change the passwords on ALL your university accounts (making sure the new password is completely different and is a strong password that will not be easily guessed.), as well as changing the passwords on your social media and private email accounts (especially if you use the same passwords on these accounts.)
 
Useful information on how to report and combat phishing and spam can also be found on our blog

[ARTICLE BY DAVID WILES]

Phishing attempt from SUN email address

Monday, June 25th, 2018

If you receive an email with the subject “Mailbox” or “Urgent Alert !!” from a university account, do not respond to it or click on the link. This is not a legitimate email from Information Technology.

We have received reports that a suspicious email is being sent out from a university account informing users that their email has exceeded its storage limit and they have to click on a link to “avoid blockage or deactivation”(As shown in example)

If you follow the link and give your information, it will be used by phishing criminals to gain access to your personal information, including your bank details. If you did click on the link of this phishing email, immediately go to the www.sun.ac.za/useradm website and change the passwords on all your university accounts.

If you have any inquiries, please let us know by logging a request or calling our Service Desk at 808 4367. 

 

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