Email Safety & Cyber Security

Security threats to personal information are everywhere on the internet today and the DGA advises that its members always use caution when it comes to suspicious emails. Remember, the Guild would never send an email asking for money or donations, or request your personal information without requiring you to log-in to the secure members-only section of www.dga.org.

Here are a few more facts and practical suggestions for your protection:
  1. Never open attached files unless you were expecting them, or click on web links in an unexpected or suspect email.
  2. Email accounts can be stolen or hijacked by malicious users. Exercise caution if you notice the following:
    • Overly vague subject matter or unusual phrasing and/or multiple grammatical and spelling errors.
    • An email that is missing a subject line or only containing a hyperlink or attachment.
    • Questions regarding account details or contact information. Spoof emails may appear associated with legitimate websites or contain recognizable names.
  3. Remember that “phishing” emails can originate from stolen or spoofed email accounts, and “fish” for personal information or security credentials. Learn to recognize these telltale signs of phishing:
    • A generic greeting - for example, “Dear customer” instead of using your name.
    • A sense of urgency - may include an urgent warning requiring your immediate action.
    • An implied account status threat - may include a warning that your account will be shut down unless you reply.
    • A forged email address - the sender’s email address may be forged, even if it looks legitimate. Examine the email address carefully to be sure that you are responding to the person you think you are.
    • An unusual/unexpected website link, sometimes offering to “fix” your account.
    • A request for your log-in and password and/or other personal information.

When receiving email, it is important to always use common sense, keen observation and healthy skepticism to make informed decisions regarding the validity of messages. Employing the proactive techniques above can help keep your digital life secure.

If you believe you have received a suspicious email from the Guild, please contact the DGA Communications Department at 310-289-5333.

Below is a list of links with more detailed information on protecting yourself online:

  • Stay Safe Online - information and resources from the National Cyber Security Alliance

US-CERT (the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team) features a wealth of information online at: www.us-cert.gov/ncas/tips.

More focused individual links from US-CERT include the following:

Other online security and email safety tips can be found on these websites: