Some hackers use covert methods, such as infecting your computer with malware to steal your most valuable information, others simply openly ask for it. This practice is called phishing and is one of the most effective ways to trick unsuspecting victims.
Phishing is a form of cybercrime that allows hackers to impersonate influencers, customer service representatives, or other trusted sources to steal your most sensitive personal information.
Phishing attacks are usually carried out via email, but can also be carried out via text messages or even phone calls. So here’s a guide for recognizing phishing attacks, how to defend against them, and what to do if you fall victim to a cybercriminal.
Some common topics in phishing emails include:
- Unblocking a credit card or bank account;
- Updating your official contact information;
- Restarting an account or membership;
- Confirmation of receipt of the parcel;
- Requesting a refund or payment;
- Making a bank transfer;
- Submitting your own or someone else’s tax reporting form.
These emails may look like they were sent from your ISP, government agencies, or even your own company.
Oftentimes, the requests in these messages are urgent (your credit card account is locked) or highly seductive (getting money).
Ways to stop 95-99% of targeted phishing attacks
Checking incoming email address and not only sender name to prevent name spoofing attacks;
- Deploy a solution that verifies the safety of links received by email when the user clicks on it;
- Deploy a solution for real-time analysis and control of your email traffic;
- Deploy a solution to implement and monitor your email authentication. One of the options for such protection is using EasyDMARC tools– a great solution for securing a domain and email infrastructure to protect your business against phishing attacks. With advanced tools, such as DMARC reporting, DMARC Record Generator, SPF record check, Blacklist checking, and delisting, leaked email alerting, the system helps to stay safe and maintain the “health” of your domain and email infrastructure.
What not to do on a social network
Social media is a personal data goldmine for cybercriminals. Information from social networks appears to be specifically targeted at phishing attackers. Don’t post on social media:
Any elements used to create your passwords (birthday, address, etc.);
Don’t post your vacation schedule and home photos. In fact, in this case, you are actively recruiting criminals.
Your phone number: cybercriminals are getting more creative. For example, some attackers call on behalf of the help desk and ask to reset passwords. If you are in doubt and do not know the caller, request the appropriate contact information and study it. Ultimately, being safe is more important than being polite.
As long as people use social media and email, targeted attacks will be the attacker’s weapon. The easiest way to stay safe is to never share confidential or sensitive information with anyone on the Internet unless you are 100% sure they are a reliable source.
But if you take a close look at the email address and URLs beforehand, you can usually spot an attack before you become a victim.
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