Organization Information

Information Security

Avoid the Computer Crash

The workday is coming to a close — you check your email before heading home and are greeted by a blue, unresponsive screen. The culprit: malware.

Malware is a growing tactic used by hackers to inflict harm or make a quick buck. To put this in perspective, damage costs associated with ransomware, a type of malware, are predicted to reach over $5 billion in 2017, compared to $325 million in 2015.1

Malware operates covertly to avoid detection, but there are warning signs that indicate a potential threat to your device:

n Files or data are suddenly unavailable.

n Processes, such as email transmissions and programs, unexpectedly start on their own.

n Files are edited without prompting.

n Files appear, disappear, or undergo unexpected changes in size.

n Systems display strange messages, or mislabel files and directories.

n Systems become slow, unstable, or inaccessible.

To avoid getting malware in the first place:

n Check carefully before clicking on links or opening any attachments.

n Never tamper with, disable, or remove virus protection software installed on USPS® equipment (unless instructed by authorized personnel).

n Do not download unapproved programs, including shareware and freeware. USPS policy prohibits these types of downloads (see section 10-3.4.3, Prohibited Software, in Handbook AS-805, Information Security).

If you suspect malware has infected your USPS device, do not attempt to fix the situation yourself. Instead, report it to the CyberSecurity Operations Center (CSOC) by emailing

For more information on how to stay cybersafe, check out the CyberSafe at USPS® websites on Blue ( and LiteBlue (, or the public-facing website at