What exactly is Phishing?
Phishing is the attempt and procedure of trying to gather private information using fraudulent emails and websites.
It’s more so known as a cyberattack that uses disguised emails as a weapon. The aim of the cybercriminals is to trick the email recipient into believing that the message is something of high importance — a message from the bank, for instance, or a note from someone in their company. All in hope of getting them to click into the email and open up the attachments or worse, hit reply and send over there identity.
What are the different types of Phishing?
Phishing comes in all different shapes and sizes, with a mixture of attacks that all link together in the hope and goal to steal your information.
Deceptive Phishing – The most common type of attack, usually an email from a recognised sender, hoping to steal your information via the means of imitating a legitimate provider
Spear Phishing – More prominent on social media platforms, an email from a recognised sender with personalised information to gain your trust and hopefully your private information
CEO Fraud – Phishing aimed primarily at the big fish companies; specifically targeting executives. Used to authorise fraudulent financial transfers as well as key information all of the employees.
Pharming – The method in tricking the user onto a malicious website, by changing the IP address to a trusted name and gaining information via login forms that farm your details.
How do you prevent being targeted by phishing attacks?
Phishing attacks are easy to spot once you understand what they want from you and what they look like, whether they plan on stealing your identity, your money or just personal information, there are a few ways to tell if it’s real or attempted theft:
- Always check the spelling of the URLs in email links before you click or enter sensitive information
- Watch out for URL redirects, where you’re subtly sent to a different website with identical design
- If you receive an email from a source you know but it seems suspicious, contact that source with a new email, rather than just hitting reply
- Don’t post personal data, like your birthday, vacation plans, or your address or phone number, publicly on social media
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