Category Archives: E-Mail

Scam Emails: Why will never ask for your information via email.

Scam Emails: Why will never ask for your information via email.

It has come to our attention that is an email being sent to our customers from reporting the following:

‘Due to congestion on our webmail servers all unverified accounts will be closed within the next 48 hours”.

The message then requests that users fill out a form asking for username and password.

This is in fact a scam email and can be deleted. Such attempts are becoming a common way that scam and spam operations attempt to collect your personal information for illegitimate uses

If you have already submitted a response with your information it is critical that you contact our customer service department right away to protect your account security. You can reach us at 530-672-1078 option 2.


That being said if you ever receive such a request from or another source, you should always contact that company via a phone call to verify before submitting information that includes a username, password, phone number, social security number, or any bank account or credit card information.

Legitimate business operations would never require a user to submit confidential information in an unsecure fashion such as email.

Should you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact us at the number listed above. Customer Service

530-672-1078 x 2

How to Spot a Phishing Email Scam


Phishing is a form of social engineering scam, in which a spammer sends an email that appears to be from some institution that the user does business with such as a bank or internet service provider, with the intent of getting personal information. They often go to great lengths to give the appearance of legitimacy, including using company logos, and building look alike websites to extract information. Understanding the material in this post, especially the section on links, will allow you to successfully identify phishing attempts in almost all cases.

Many customers with email addresses received just such an email this last week. In this article, I will dissect this Phishing email to help our customers understand how to sniff out these scams. (If you visited the link in this email, or feel your password may have been compromised, please call support at 530-672-1078).

This scam email avoided many of the obvious mistakes scammers make in the Phishing emails they send. We will start with the most important and difficult part of the scam to pull off, the fake website, and the link to it.

1) The Link- This is how the phisher actually gets your information. They send you to a website that they set up, and have you enter your password, credit card number, or whatever they are looking to get. In this email, if you clicked on the link, you were taken to a website at It may not be immediately obvious that this is not the website, after all, it has in it. This is the spammer taking advantage of the fact that people don’t understand how web addresses work.

  We will start with a short explanation of how web addresses are structured.


Subdomains are not always used in a web address, but the domain and toplevel domain have to be there. Now lets examine the address of the scammers website, and see if we can identify the problem.

Now recall that the domain order is level domain

Site Subdomain Domain Top Level Domain
Scam directcon net ms
Real directcon net

As you can see from the table, the top level domain for the scam site is .ms, where the real site’s tld is .net. Because the scammer owns the domain name he can create a dummy site for any website who’s TLD is .net. As another example, lets say that you bank with Wells Fargo, and that their domain name is This same scam could be used for that site.

Site Subdomain Domain Top Level Domain
Scam wellsfargo net ms
Real wellsfargo net

This may seem like incomprehensible technobabble, but understanding this is the most important thing to glean from the article. If you pay attention to the web addresses of important sites, and are able to identify domains, subdomains, and top level domains, then it will be very difficult to trick you into giving up important information to a scam site.

Now a quick look at the domains you might be dealing with.

Site Subdomain Domain Top Level Domain * cal net * directcon net

2) The FROM field: Many spammers will neglect to change the from field in the email to something from the company the are imitating. The example here was done well by the criminal, they faked the from field to make it appear that it comes from support staff.

3) LOGO- Often the logo used in spam emails is a low quality copy, or different from the ones sent in email communications. The one in the example above is a very fuzzy copy from the website.

4) Grammar- Many phishing con artists come from outside the United States, and as a result, there will often be awkwardly worded sentences, or misspellings present in the text.

If ever in doubt about the validity of a communication, please call our support at 530-672-1078 to verify before exposing your account information.


Email Security and You

Over the last few weeks we have received a lot of incoming phone calls regarding email scams that you, our customers have been receiving. While many of you are easily able to identify when these are a scams we felt it would be a good idea to go over the basics that will help you identify these and protect yourself from the threat they represent. These three simple steps will keep you scam free and clear!


Q: Is the email asking you to respond with sensitive information regarding you, your family, or in general?

A: If this is the case more than likely this email is a scam email trying to “Fish” for information. No business online will ever ask you for your username, your password, your social security number, or ask you to verify your checking account number etc. Most businesses will likely call you in the event of a security breach or other concern regarding your information.


Q: Is the email asking you to download and open an attachment to “help us update our records”

A: Recently some scam emails are actually virus laden with either a picture file or zip file attached with a request that you open the file and “fill in your information”. This is not only a scam but will also infect your computer with whatever virus the sender had as well.

In closing, the term “Better safe than sorry” still applies today, especially to email communications. In a world where instant and fast is not always better, a quick phone call or email for clarification can be the difference between a few minutes delay to an $80 or more computer repair bill.


Q: Does the email attachment come from a friend or business associate?
A: Often times your friends and or business associates will get a virus infection and their PC’s will act as senders of scam and virus email as in the above example. Unless you were expecting the file to be sent via email it is always a good idea to confirm that the picture, file, or link to another website was actually sent by that person. If it’s out of the blue, and to good to be true, I simply delete the emails unless I’m expecting the attachment.

Setting Up Email on Android Phones

This is a step by step tutorial explaining  how to set up your or email account on your Android Device. This setup was tested on a Droid X, and given the wide array of Android Devices, you can expect that your screen will not look exactly the same, but should work in a very similar way.

1) Click on the Apps Menu on the lower right hand corner of the screen.













2) Tap  ”Settings”












3) Tap “Accounts”













4) Tap “Add Account”












5)Enter Your Email Address

5)Enter Your Password

7) Tap “Next”










8) Tap “Set Up Manually”













9) Tap “General Settings”











10) Enter a Name to identify the account to you (Example: “ Email account”)

11) Enter the name you want people to see in the “From” field in the email you send

12) Make Sure Your correct email address is shown in this box

13) Click “OK”







14) Tap “Incoming Server”












15) Choose “POP mail server” from the list

16) If your email address ends in enter

If your email ends with enter

17) This should be your email address

18) This should be the password for your account.

19) Click “Advanced Settings”





20) Port should be “110

21) Use Secure Connection should be unchecked

22) Choose “Auto” or Use Secure Password (TLS)

23) Choose “Password” for Authentication

24) Uncheck Verify Certificate (Choose YES from the pop up box)

25) Tap “OK






26) Tap “Ok”











27) Tap “Outgoing Server











28) If your email address ends with enter, if it ends with  use

29) This should be your email address

30) Password for your email

31) Tap “Advanced Settings







32) Port should be 587

33) Use Secure Connection should be unchecked

34) Choose “Auto” or Use Secure Password (TLS)

35) Choose “Auto” for Authentication

36) Uncheck Verify Certificate (Choose YES from the pop up box)

37) Click “OK





38) Click “OK”











40)  Click OK,  You are now done.




Setting up or email accounts on iPhone

This is a short tutorial showing and email users how to set up their email accounts on the iPhone.

Tap the Settings icon.

Choose “”Add Account”


Select “Other” from the List of account types.

Enter your account information

1) The name you wish others to see in the “From” line in emails you send.

2) Your entire email address (if your email is enter that here)

3) Enter the password for your email account…


Choose “IMAP” from the Options at the top of the screen, and fill in the fields as indicated.


Name: The name you want others to see in emails from you

Address: Your email address

Description: A description of the account (something like My email address)

Incoming Mail Server

Host name:

For email addresses use

For email addresses use

Username: Your email address

Password: the password for the email account

Outgoing Mail Server

Host name:

For email addresses use

For email addresses use

Username: Your email address

Password: The password for your email address

Tap “Save

You will get a screen stating it cannot verify server identity. Click “continue”

It will take a few minutes to verify the account info, and you see the above prompt again, simply hit “Continue”again .


Assuming all your information is correct, you should be ready to go (tested on iPhone 4).

Setting up or email on the iPad

This is a short tutorial showing and email users how to set up email on the iPad

1. If this is the first account you’re setting up on the iPad tap Mail.

Otherwise, from the Home screen tap Settings

Tap “Mail, Contacts, Calendars” then “Add Account


Tap “Add Mail Account

Fill out the “New Account” page as follows…

1) Enter the name you want others to see in the “From” line of the emails you send.

2) Enter your email address ( or

3) Enter the password for this email  account.

4) Enter a short description of the account (My email, or whatever makes sense to you).

Tap the “Next” button.

Fill in the required information on the next page as follows..

5) Item 5 will differ depending on whether your email ends with or Users use for (5) users use for (5)

6) Enter your email address here

7) Enter the password for your email account here.

8) Item 8 will differ depending on whether your email ends with of users use for (8) users use for (8)

9) Enter your email address here

10) Enter the password for your email here.

Hit enter or click “Save” . Your ipad will now try to retrieve other settings from the server.

You will get 2 pop ups during the verification process, click continue for both.

If you get any warning or errors, check the configuration above, and make sure passwords are correct. If all went as planned, you are now ready to send and receive email on your iPad.

Configuring Outlook 2010 for your E-mail Address


These instructions will work for and e-mail addresses. The only difference will be the name of the Incoming and Outgoing servers.

1) Open your Outlook 2010

2) On the top-left menu click on File > Add Account.







3) Select “E-mail Account” and click Next (Some of you may not get this screen; You can skip to next step).

4) Select “Manually configure server settings” and click Next


5) Select “Internet E-mail” and click Next. (Some of you may not get this screen; You can skip to next step)

6) Type your full name and e-mail address. Change “Account Type” to “POP3″, if necessary.
If your e-mail address ends with, enter for both Incoming and Outgoing mail servers.
For addresses, enter for both.
Enter your username and password and then click on the “More Settings …” button on the bottom right.

7) Click on the “Outgoing Server” tab and make sure “My outgoing server (SMTP) requires authentication” is checked. You don’t need to change anything else on this screen.











8) Next you want to click on the “Advanced” tab. Change your incoming server port to 995 and check “This server requires an encrypted connction (SSL)”.
For the Outgoing server, make sure it uses port 587 and TLS for encrypted connection.











9) You may now click OK to go back to the same screen seen in step 6 and click on “Test Account Settings” to make sure all settings are working. Here you may see a screen like the one below. This is a certificate warning that will create the encrypted transfer of data between your computer and the e-mail server. Click “Yes” to accept and you should be good to go!

Configuring Mac Mail for your Email Address

This is a short guide to configuring your or Email Account In Apple OSX Mail.

The steps in this guide apply to both and email addresses. If you have a email address, be sure to use instead of wherever you see in the guide!

1) Open Apple Mail






2) Click on the Mail Icon in the Toolbar at the top left of the screen, and then choose preferences.








3) Click on the ‘+’ in the bottom left corner of the screen













4)  Fill in the fields. Full name is your full name. (be sure to use YOUR email address, not the one in the image). Then click continue. Mail will then try to find the mail server on it’s own.











5) Choose “POP” for the Account Type, Give The Account a description, and fill in the fields as you see them in the picture, using your username and password. Then Click continue.










6) Check the “Use Secure Socket Layer”, this will encrypt your login information before it is sent to the server. Choose “Password” for the Authentication type. Click continue.










7) Choose a description for the outgoing server. Fill in the fields as you see them in the picture. Be sure to check “Use Authentication”, and use your username and password. Then Click Continue. Mail will verify the server. If you get error messages, check your network connection, and verify the settings on the previous pages.











8) Verify that all the info in the summary appears correct. Then click “Create”

9) You may get a pop up like the one below. Click on “Show Certificate”, and check the “Always trust when connecting to” checkbox. Then Click “connect”.










10) You will then be asked for your computers password to store your choice on your computer securely.







Repeat the last two steps when prompted about the outgoing server certificate.

This was tested and Verified on Mac OSX Snow Leopard


How Do I Set Up E-Mail on my computer?

There are several ways to access your or E-Mail accounts.

1) Log into your or Webmail through your browser (Internet Explorer or Firefox for example). Just go to , and click on the webmail login for your email account type as pictured below.

2) Set up your E-Mail account in an email client on your computer or on your phone. Just choose your email client from the list below. (these are not all yet completed, but will be soon)

Windows Based E-Mail Clients Mac Based E-Mail Clients
Outlook Express
Outlook 2003
Outlook 2007
Outlook 2010
Mac Mail
Opera Email
Android Phones