2,720,201 emails are being sent every second! Amazing, huh? Amongst those emails you’re sending at work for that next meeting or to your friend that includes pizza recipes, phishing emails are becoming a lot more prominent and difficult to decipher. Here’s a way it works:
If you have, even a small amount of doubt about an email containing a virus, be cautious. One click, one download, could send you or your IT team on a whirlwind. So, what is a phishing attack? To put it in simple terms, it’s basically someone pretending do be someone they’re not to gather sensitive information. Here are some tips on how to spot these kind of emails:
- Be cautious if you receive an email from someone you don’t know.
- If you receive an email asking you to download a document, hover over the link and you can see the web link you will be directed to. You can visit the root site and see if this site is foreign and not associated to anything within the email. Example: http://www.asibiz.com/copy-scan-print/printers-copiers/xerox-production-printing/ (Root email: asibiz.com)
- Poor spelling in multiple areas, within the email, may be signs of a phishing email.
- Uncommon greetings are also red flags of phishing. Examples of uncommon greetings include: “Dear Customer,” ‘Dear Member.” Another common way scammers try to trick you is when they start the email with “Dear _______” and there is a blank with no name.
- “Change your password before it expires” ‘Your bank account has been hacked’ ‘Urgent action required” These are extremely common tactics to get you to act on an email right then and there; scammers will not shy away from using your emotions such as anxiety and concern. If this does happen, don’t act on the email immediately. Call your bank, IT team or ask someone to take a look at your email. If you receive an email stating it’s from the IRS or FBI, disregard the email completely. Government agencies do not use email as their first means of communication.
All, in all, be aware of phishing emails you receive and don’t panic. If you receive one, flag it, send it to your email provider and/or delete it and consider changing your password. If something seems to be even slightly “off,” remember to always trust your gut.