Phishing e-mails are sent by scammers to get you to click on a link or call them. They are designed to get you to give the scammers your login credentials, personal information or money.
Phishing is, and will continue to be, the cybercriminals favorite mode of attack. The reason is because it’s easy to dupe even the smartest person with a cunning e-mail. Attacks will get more creative. Spoof e-mails will become more difficult to differentiate from authentic ones.
Clever subject lines, such as “changes to your health benefits”, “unusual login detected”, “payment alert”, or “antivirus expiration”, try to get you to open the e-mail and take action. Deceptive links in the e-mail may send you to malicious websites. Images in the e-mail look like logos from reputable companies, such as Amazon, McAfee or Norton.
Some e-mail services spot phishing e-mails an route them to your spam / junk folder. Becoming more security aware can reduce your risk of acting on phishing attacks by 70%. To identify a phishing e-mail, look for:
- 1. Who it is FROM: hover your mouse over the from name. If it did not come from the company in the message, it is a phishing scam.
- 2. Check grammar and spelling in the message. It it is not perfect English, it is most likely phishing.
- 3. An immediacy to scare you into action, or a “too good to be true” offer of winning or refunds are another big clue.
Phishing at a glance:
- n 97% of people cannot recognize a sophisticated phishing e-mail
- n 1 in 3 people are likely to click a link in e-mails
- n 1 in 8 people are likely to share information requested in a phishing e-mail
- n 60% of people open e-mails they aren’t fully confident are safe
- n 45% open e-mails they consider to be suspicious, “just in case it’s important”
- n 45% of people never report suspicious e-mails for review
- n 41% fail to notice a phishing e-mail because they were tired
- n 47% cite distractions as the main factor in their failure to spot phishing e-mails
If you are not sure if an e-mail is phishing, you can forward the e-mail to me at firstname.lastname@example.org for my review.
I am committed to protect your computers at an affordable price. Thank you for trusting me to keep your computers healthy. Contact us at 239-567-0104 when it is time to renew your protection software, or if you need computer and internet help. Be well.
By Linda Lindquist, June 6, 2022