Proos: Protect your cell phones from viruses and spyware

For Immediate Release                                                                    Contact: Rebecca O’Connell
July 22, 2014                                                                                       517-373-6960

LANSING—Sen. John Proos is encouraging Southwest Michigan residents to be mindful of scam artists who are increasingly using malicious software to steal personal information on electric devices, such as smartphones, tablets and computers.

“The advancements in mobile and electronic technology have given consumers unparalleled access to information. Unfortunately, it has also given scammers an increased ability to wreak havoc on our lives,” said Proos, R-St. Joseph. “I urge all Southwest Michigan families to protect their electronic devices from software like malware, which can enable cybercriminals to hijack your device and steal your identity.”

Malware is malicious software that causes devices to repeatedly crash, can include spyware designed to monitor computers and has the potential to steal consumers’ personal information. Scammers often create official-looking emails to trick people to download malware that appears to be from governmental offices or businesses like a bank.

“Scam artists are clever in disguising their fraudulent activity,” Proos said. “Following two simple rules can help protect you and your family from malware: do not reply or click on any message asking for personal or financial information, and install and keep updated a protective anti-virus, anti-spyware software. Please take some time to review safety procedures with children and vulnerable adults”

A consumer alert from Attorney General Bill Schuette on the topic, “Malware: What is it and How to Avoid It,” can be read by visiting http://1.usa.gov/1pNbiWS. 

Residents may report a suspected scam to the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division by calling 1-877-765-8388 or by visiting their website at www.michigan.gov/ag. There you can click on Complaints to learn how to file a complaint online or by U.S. mail.

Any resident who believes they have been a victim of a scam and has experienced any trouble contacting the attorney generals’ office are welcome to contact Sen. Proos’ office by phone at (517) 373-6960 or by email at: senjproos@senate.michigan.gov.

 

Editor’s Note – Audio comments by Proos are available on the senator’s webpage at www.SenatorJohnProos.com. Click on “Audio” under the Media Center tab.