Currently Browsing: Workplace Communication

Phishing attacks always a threat; When in doubt, just ask us.

A client of ours sent this over to me today asking if it was legitimate or not.  We get questions like this quite often, and we always tell folks to reach out to us in moments of doubt, rather than doing something potentially harmful.  We’re always, always glad you asked.  Here’s what was sent over this morning. 

Look below for the rest of the post.

—–Original Message—–

From: C Web Mail Team []

Sent: Tuesday, April 13, 2010 8:00 AM

Subject: Attn: webmail Owner

Attn: webmail Owner

We just confirmed that you have not upgrade to the new web-mail version. That is why we are sending

you this massage to upgrade your account now. This is because we are preventing your web-mail from

closure. And also we have notice that your mail have been used for send spam mail to other mail.

To prevent your account from this you will have to send a verification massage so that we will

confirm from our computer system that you are the rightfully owner of this mail and also to upgrade

your account to the version. To upgrade your account you have to send us the following information

so that we can upgrade as soon as possible.


Email User name : ……….

EMAIL Password : ………..

Date of Birth :………….

Last login:……………..

Warning!!! if you refuse to send this information to us within (1) weeks of receiving this warning you will

lose your account. Warning Code: PX2G99AAJ

Thank you for using webmail


NOTE: This message is authorize by the webmail Project email account protector unit.Notification message will be send back to you after verifying your account before account could be reset.

C All right reserve.

This is a common occurrence, and a nasty potential threat so let’s look at how this played out.  Someone – let’s call them Janice – receives an email asking her to click on a link, submit personal information, reply with answers to questions and so on, all in the name of making sure something bad doesn’t happen to her.  Things like the protection of her bank account, the continuity of her webmail access, a shinny opportunity like free tickets or an iPod and so on.  The request is presented in ambiguous enough a manner as to keep Janice from dismissing it out of hand.  If it was something more cartoonish like a Viagra solicitation or an invitation to a gambling web site, Janice might have been able to click ‘delete’ and move on.

In this case, Janice is left to wonder – should she or shouldn’t she.  Should she send her birthday, password and username to the system administrator or not?  What if her webmail access was turned off?  How would she re-activate it?

We hope that Janice and everyone else will consider a third option – ask for help.  We can quickly answer the question for you.  Avoid, avoid avoid complying with requests like this, no matter now legitimate it might look.  Just ask us.  We can help you stay out of hot water.

The best sushi in Albany, NY

A couple of times per week, a group of WSG staff goes out to dinner, and then returns to the office to work late.  The venue for dinner varies, but usually includes sushi of some sort.  Being the hard-core truth-seekers that we are, there is always a desire to find and then consume the best sushi available to us.

It seems like we’ve found the best stuff in the area at Koto’s, which is located at 260 Wolf Road in Latham.  We went there tonight, and had a delicious mix of yellow-tail, salmon, tuna and something quite remarkable called the “Jim Roll” which seems to be named after our Vice President Jim Gile.  We’re big fans of the special wasabi, which was powerful enough to engulf my entire head in spicy goodness.

How is sushi related to technology services, web design, network support or any other WSG staple?  Good question.  You may have to become one of our clients to find out.

Wiki, Wiki, Wiki

The Web Worker Daily blog recently detailed fifteen ways to make use of a wiki.  I’m happy to report that we use our company wiki for at least eight of those.  As our company grew, it meant more people and more client information to keep track of.  Searching for information on a shared network drive became too time consuming and frustrating.  We had no effective way to compile, store, access and edit our most important information.  Client histories, guidelines on writing .php code, design preferences, employee handbooks, phone lists, ongoing projects and the like were just not as available as we needed them to be.

Enter the GWiki.

In early May of this year, our CIO Paul Kulp used Media Wiki, the same open-source software originally created for Wikipedia, to create ours.  The G in GWiki pays homage to the family name of our parent – the Gile Companies.  The main sections in our ever expanding database are:

  • Companies
  • People
  • Web Sites
  • How we do things
  • Clients
  • Must Read
  • Digital Suggestion Box

Within those categories lies a wide variety of data; it drills down pretty far.  We do our best to add content as we go along, locating information and either adding it to the wiki, or referencing where to find it.  Since new pages can be created and edited on the fly, it is an ideal tool for a fast-moving organization.

It can be a bit of a hurdle to change people’s thinking from post-it notes and network drives to saving data in the wiki, but over time it yields results.  For example, I no longer have a company phone list taped to the wall near my desk, just a toolbar bookmark that takes me to the company-wide phone list.  On this list is found phone extensions, emails, instant messenger handles, and links to each employee’s individual page.  There you will find a photo and whatever information that person wants you to know about themselves.

Even more useful are the descriptions of internal procedures, client histories, explanations of the specific preferences held by our Creative Director Danielle McMahon, a digital suggestion box, results of usability studies and on and on.