Phishing is a common cyber crime, and it’s on the rise. With this social engineering tactic, criminals send authentic-looking emails that trick the recipient into revealing login credentials or clicking on malicious links, wreaking havoc. How can you protect yourself and your business? These five tips will help you spot phishing emails.
1) It doesn’t look genuine.
Often times, cyber criminals will go to great lengths to make their emails look authentic. However, there are usually telltale signs in the email that you may be able to find if you look closely. Examine the email address it came from – at first glance it may look authentic but you might find it’s a bogus variation on the real thing for example: fedx.com vs fedx892.com
2) It asks you for personal information.
Any email that’s asking you to confirm login credentials or other personal information should be treated with suspicion. If you didn’t expect an email from the sender and it’s asking for sensitive information, it may be a phishing attempt. If you believe it may be authentic, use another means to contact the sender. Don’t click links from these emails.
3) It’s poorly written.
You can often spot a phishing email simply by the poor language used in the body of the message. If it contains spelling and grammatical mistakes, as well as strange turns of phrase it’s most likely a phishing email.
4) It has an attachment.
Emails with attachments should be handled carefully, before you inadvertently download a virus. Always scan attachments with a good anti-virus program before downloading, and never download something if you’re not sure of the source.
5) It seems urgent.
Phishing emails often rely on creating a sense of urgency. The email may claim that your account has been hacked and the only way to rescue it is to enter your login details, or your account will be closed if you do not act immediately. Ensure that you take the time to really think about whether an email is asking something reasonable of you.
When it comes to emails, a good motto to live by is “when it doubt, throw it out.” There are always other ways to get in touch with a legitimate business, by using their official website and contact information. Phishing is on the rise because people often fall for these tricks. Protect your business by educating your team to treat any emails carefully before clicking on links or opening attachments. Contact us to learn more.