Bad Links are Bad News!

Every day people encounter hyperlinks in emails, documents, and webpages. Good links are easy ways to navigate the internet. Saving links helps us return to places we've already been. On the other hand, bad links take us to places that we don't want to go. They expose our devices to malicious code. How can a link be bad exactly?  

A lot of security is based around preventing people from connecting to your device. The tool that does that is called a firewall. Essentially the firewall is focused on preventing "crank calls" from the internet. Firewalls work great and prevent almost all "crank calls". There are usually millions to billions of these. 

Attackers have a hard time "crank calling" your device. The firewall is blocking them. So instead, they want you to call them. A lot of firewalls are focused on preventing people from "calling" in. They often aren't as concerned about you "calling" out. That is where bad links come in. The attacker can't "call" you because of the firewall but they can trick you into "calling" them. They want you to click a bad link they have provided.  

The attacker will then try to use that "conversation" between your device and their server to compromise it. Many newer firewalls (like ours) try to maintain list of bad people that you shouldn't call. Our device security (Defender for Endpoint) will also try to stop you from calling the bad list. Unfortunately, it's impossible to have a complete bad list because the internet is huge. It's also changing all the time.  

Don't get bested by bad links. If you aren't sure about a link don't click it. Try to navigate to the website in question yourself, don't use the link. Never click a link just to see where it leads. If you don't know where it goes...don't click it. Most links are great. It's also important to remember that some links are bad.  

If you need further assistance, please submit a ticket here: Report an IT Security Incident , or call the IT Service Desk at (585) 395-5151 Option 1.

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Article ID: 141350
Mon 8/22/22 8:51 AM
Mon 8/22/22 8:51 AM