Don’t be that guy

MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan -- MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan - We've all been to the training, seen the slides on the commander's access channel and who could forget the commercials on American Forces Network. But, when you get that special e-mail you've got two choices, one is to do what you have been trained or to be "that guy." 

From September 2008 to May 2009, I was temporarily assigned to my squadron's orderly room, and, of course, I would receive tons of e-mails on a daily basis. One day I sat down at my computer and opened up my e-mail to check the daily postings. I noticed that I had received an e-mail from a lieutenant that I didn't recognize, which should have been my first clue because we only have a handful of lieutenants in our squadron. The subject line read "Mandatory Globaldyne Registration," so I clicked on it without hesitation. 

This e-mail wasn't like the e-mails that I normally receive from lieutenants asking for something; this e-mail said "Sir/Ma'am, you have been selected for a pilot run." As I was reading it, I thought about a friend of mine who told me how she got to ride on an F-16 Fighting Falcon. English is my second language and sometimes when I read e-mails and other documents I tend to misread and misunderstand them. Nevertheless, the only thing on my mind was, "oh my gosh, I got picked to go on a free plane ride; how many people actually get to fly on an F-16!" 

So, I clicked on the link that was provided, which led to a Web site with a B-2 Spirit image on the background. The e-mail also stated "registration needs to be completed by 4p.m. Friday." I started the registration process, and in moments I received a message saying "VIRUS." As soon as I received this message, I freaked out and turned off the computer, which is something you're not supposed to do. Then, I turned it back on with the local area network cable still hooked up to the computer. Five minutes later, I received an e-mail from one of our wing information assurance officers saying, "As I am sure you are aware, you have recently fallen victim to a Misawa Air Base Blue Team phishing scam." 

I was so embarrassed that I didn't remember the information protection training, neither did I follow the network incident reporting aid, which was on my monitor. As a consequence of not following the training we've all been provided, I had to complete the information protection training again. 

It's everyone's responsibility to ensure that Misawa's computer network doesn't become infected with viruses and to protect our information. It took being caught in an IA phishing scam to drive this message home. Don't be that guy. 

(For more information about the Blue Team, click here http://www.misawa.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123134261)