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Cyber Security Quiz—Are you Cyber Savvy or About to Get Scammed?

How well do you really protect yourself in cyber space?  Do you follow the advice of experts and use caution when using electronic devices and the Internet?  Are your family’s home computers and laptops protected?  It’s always great to brush up on tips to keep yourself safe in the digital world. Take this quiz and find how much you really know.

1. You just received an email from a very wealthy person that needs your help moving money across an international border. For just a few dollars you can help him and he is offering to pay you many times more than you donate. What do you do?

A. Seems like a good deal. Easy money!
B. Delete the email and/or report it to your IT department
C. Share the wealth! Forward it to all your friends so they can get quick money as well.
D. Reply with a note that tells them you recognize a scam and will alert the authorities.

2. Which of these passwords is the most secure?

A. Password
B. Password1!
C. P@$$wOrd1!
D. Grouchy cat laser pointer

3. You’re browsing online when a new window pops up stating that a virus has been found on your computer. It seems legit–after all, it’s from Microsoft. The window provides a button to click offering to resolve the issue. You should do the following:

A. Click on the button to remove the virus. It’s from Microsoft, right?
B. Place your cursor over the button and check the link’s URL. If the address looks legit, it’s probably ok to click. If it looks like a scam link, close the window.
C. Close the original browser window and the pop-up window. Do not return to that site.
D. Hit the ‘Back’ button to make it go away, because the ‘Back’ button solves everything.

4. What does the https:// at the beginning of a URL mean, as opposed to http:// (without the “s”)?

A. The site has special high definition
B. The information on the site is encrypted
C. The site is the newest version available
D. The site is not accessible to certain computers – but it works for yours!
E. None of the above

5. What is spyware?

A. When a cyber criminal takes on your identity
B. The clothing James Bond wears
C. Software that collects data from your computer
D. A website that sells your personal data

6. Which of these is an example of a phishing email?

A. “You have won the lottery! Follow this link to claim!”
B. “Your bank account has been compromised. Login here to protect yourself.”
C. “Help. I am stuck abroad and urgently need money transferred to me to get home.”
D. All of the above. Beware! And don’t click.

7. When do you need to use anti-virus software?

A. When you first buy a computer
B. On your laptop only and update it regularly
C. All the time, on all web-connected devices—and update it regularly
D. As soon as you feel sick

8. Which of these is the least risky to share on social media?

A. Your exciting holiday plans
B. How cute your pet cat Sheba is
C. What you’re eating for dinner
D. Your new phone number
E. Types of credit
F. All of the above

9. It’s safe to use your laptop or mobile device to access your financial accounts at Starbucks, the airport or other public areas that offer free Wi-Fi. True or False?

A. True
B. False


1.B. These emails are always fraudulent and looking to collect money from unsuspecting victims. No one ever collects the money promised.

2.D. According to, it is recommended that you generate passphrases that are easy to associate in your mind, and are personal to you, like “grouchy cat laser pointer.” Passphrases like this are easy for humans to remember and difficult for computers to guess. And always use multi-factor authentication, if available, to add another layer of protection.

3.C. The site is intentionally designed to catch people off guard to get them to load malicious software, or it has been hacked and redesigned to load malicious software. Either way, do not go back to that site.

4.B. The https:// at the beginning of the web address shows that the website is authentic and encrypts data during transmissions.

5.C. Spyware refers to malicious software that collects personal information from your electronic devices.

6.D. The crazier the request, the more likely it is to be a phishing attempt. In fact, scammers will pull out all the stops to get you to hand over personal details or open a malicious web address.

7.C. No matter what device you are on, make sure you are browsing secure websites: look for the https:// not just http:// and have a padlock icon in the address bar.

8.C. Your food choices should be safe to talk about, but not your location. And never share your phone number, address, Social Security Number or account numbers on public sites. Also, be careful when you take Facebook quizzes that ask for personal information to see which movie star you look like or other nonsense; they may be harvesting your answers to circle back and do some damage to your accounts or steal your identity.

9.B. Not all public Wi-Fi networks are current with anti-virus and other security precautions. For sensitive matters like online banking, be sure you are only using a secure, trusted connection.

Resources; NIST, NCSAM, FTC, Pew Research

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