Phishing emails are fraudulent attempts to steal information or infect the computer you are using with malware. An important way to protect yourself is to learn how to recognise a phishing email attempt.
Here are some clues indicating this email is a scam:
1. Fake email address
An obvious way to identify phishing emails is the recipient’s email address. Majority of the time the email address is different to the company they imply as. If the email address matches, hover over to double-check.
2. Email addressed
Is the email addressed to you specifically or is the address vague? Phishing emails are more likely to not be personalised and may use salutations like “dear” or “customer” rather than using your name (because they don’t know you).
They try to reassure recipients by encouraging them to click on the link they provide. Again, you can hover on the link to check the URL or copy and paste it on search but don’t click through the link as it may contain a virus.
4. Personal details being requested
A legitimate company will unlikely to ask for your personal, especially by email.
5. The email creates a sense of urgency
Phishing emails can make it sound urgent to encourage you to act fast. A legitimate company would rarely make the first contact by email with a very short deadline.
Other things to look out for:
Suspicious attachments or links – do not open them!
No signature or one that does not match the company style
The offer seems too good to be true
The message seems to be from a government agency
Seeing any of the errors above is enough to confirm the email is a phishing attempt – but what if these errors aren’t present?
A smarter scammer would have corrected these mistakes and would go the extra mile to find your details like your name and make the URL in a much more convincing manner.
So how do you guarantee you don't fall for phishing scams?
Applying these actions will help to protect you from online scams:
1. Use your link
This is the most guaranteed way to not fall victim for email scams. Use Google search to direct to that website, if the email is legitimate you will see the same information on the website. If you use their link or phone number, where you land or who you talk to, is their choice, not yours.
2. Install or activate a web tool that identifies malicious sites
Every standard browser has a tool you can turn on to alert you if the website you are about to click on is safe or malicious.
Education and awareness services provide a diversity of training packages and resources that will empower your users with the knowledge and skills they need to prevent security breaches, widen their security knowledge and increase business productivity.
4. Install an email filter
Email filtering services protect you from malicious threats and helps to reduce risks to your employees and improves the performance of your email system.
If you find yourself as the victim of a phishing email, change all your passwords immediately. Consider using Password Manager to lower your risk profile, and make sure you have an antivirus solution with secure web browsing features installed and up to date.Several other ways can be used to protect your business from phishing emails including additional cyber-security.