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An employee publication of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice
November/December 2014

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W-2 tax forms scheduled for
January distribution

W-2 tax form graphic

As tax payment time approaches, taxpayers receive financial forms so they can prepare their 2014 returns. One of the most important documents agency employees receive is Form W-2, which provides your wage and salary information, and the amount of tax withheld from your paycheck.

The agency's Payroll Processing Department will send employees' Form W-2 for 2014 to unit or departmental human resources offices for distribution by January 31. Inactive employees who are on leave without pay or separated as of the printing date will receive their 2014 Form W-2 by mail at their home address no later than January 31.

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Information Security:
pop-up phishing warning

pop-up phishing email scam graphic art

The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the National White Collar Crime Center, has issued a warning about a new twist to the old telephone-based tech support phishing scam: fake "pop-up" attack warnings designed to hijack your computer.

In this scam, a pop-up window appears in the user's Web browser warning of a computer virus and urging them to call a toll-free number for assistance. In some instances, users cannot close the pop-up window and attempts to bypass the warning only produce further warnings. Some of these phishing programs include audio voice-over which plays on an unending loop, and many of these websites are poorly secured and visiting them can infect your computer with a variety of malicious programs.

IC3 investigators called the help number and were connected to a person claiming to be a computer manufacturer's service representative. The fake service rep tried to convince the investigators that something was wrong with their computer, such as a hardware failure, a computer virus infection or software needed to be updated. If you make the mistake of sharing your computer's system information or installing the scam's software, the cybercriminal can take remote control of your computer, gaining access to confidential information and possibly infecting the computer with actual viruses to compromise the system.

This recent wave of attacks is particularly active and likely to be more effective than the classic fake tech support phone call. While technically unsophisticated, these pages can be so troublesome that some desperate users actually call for help. Some of these can prevent closing the browser window and also disable right-click control on your computer mouse. When authorities identify and shut down one of these phishing sites, another is created, all with legitimate-sounding names.

TDCJ's software security, managed by the Information Technology Department, blocks most phishing attempts from agency computers, but if you see a pop-up warning urging you to call for technical assistance, remain calm and call the agency's computer help desk at 936-437-1304. Despite the urgent tone of the message, never call a toll-free number or click on a Web link for tech support assistance with a TDCJ computer.

If you encounter a phishing pop-up while using your home computer, don’t use a Close button appearing within the pop-up window as it could actually link to a malicious website. Try to close the pop-up by clicking on the X in the upper-right corner or striking the Alt+F4 keys on your keyboard. If the popup does not close, click on the Windows Start Menu, type Task Manager and hit enter. Try to terminate Internet Explorer by opening the Processes tab, right-clicking on iexplore.exe and selecting End Process. An antivirus scan should be run after the pop-up has been eliminated to help ensure that the system was not infected.

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Employee Assistance Program
can help with stressful times

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Call toll-free to report waste, fraud and abuse of TDCJ resources

Waste, fraud and abuse of state resources cost all taxpayers millions of dollars each year

The Office of the Inspector General is dedicated to detecting, investigating and prosecuting reports of waste, fraud and abuse of state resources within all divisions of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.

If you have any information regarding waste, fraud or abuse of state benefits, equipment, personnel or funds, please contact the Office of the Inspector General, Crime Stoppers or the State Auditor’s Office toll free.

Crime Stoppers 1-800-832-8477 Office of Inspector General 1-866-372-8329 State Auditor's Office 1-800-892-8348

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W-2 tax forms scheduled for January distribution

Information security:
pop-up phishing warning

Employee Assistance Program can help with stressful times

Call toll-free to report waste, fraud and abuse of TDCJ resources

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