A Few Words from Jim – December 2022
It’s Christmas time! We are supposed to be spreading cheer at this time of year.
The photo on the covers are from Chad Sobotka. I love his photos and I’m thankful that he gives me permission to share them with all of you.
This issue focuses on Cyber Fraud. Not very Christmasy of a theme, but it’s important to not wait to talk about it.
On the cover I state, “Our communities are under attack. Cyber Fraud is rampant and out of control.” And I feel it’s true.
We can’t wait for bad actors to turn nice and stop what they are doing and we can’t wait for the law to fix this issue, they can only track it at this point. We need to understand all the threats that are coming at us and become hyper diligent about our own cyber security.
It’s too easy for bad actors to spoof emails, or texts that look official and align with life events and convince you to provide info or worse provide funds.
Read the story about our friend Morgan, who runs Northwest Pizza, and find out how he was swindled by emails that looked legit, during a house purchase event in his life, proving instructions to him on where to wire the money for the down payment at closing.
Unfortunately, once the deed is done, it’s done. He has an active FBI investigation going but most likely the money is gone.
This same thing is happening to millions of us and thousands of businesses because it’s easy to do.
So how do you stop this from happening to you and your business?
It starts with education. Read A Message from People’s Bank – Stop the Fraud on page 15, Big Organizations and Small Mom and Pop Shops can be victims of cyber fraud on page 16 and Phishing Scam Tips on page 18.
Then make process changes and behavior changes to you and your company on how it handles emails and requests for information and transactions.
My wife and I are committed to learn and do what we can to help stop the bad actors from stealing from us and I’m committed to sharing what I learn with you so you can stop it from happening to you as well.
The only good part of what happened to Morgan and his family is that the community is rallying to help him build back the funds he lost.
And that makes me feel all Christmassy inside.
After you read Help Morgan Recover His Life Savings on page 12, I hope you join my wife and I in helping Morgan continue to feel the love and support by donating a even a small amount to the GoFundMe campaign that was created for their benefit.
I know he appreciates it and is humbled by the outpouring of love and support.
Thanks for reading. Happy Holidays to you and your family.
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