Phishing attacks are not something new. The people around the world have been becoming its victim. This popular scam has risen during the last year. And 2016 has become the year of phishing scamming in the history of internet technology. Not only individuals. Also, organizations and enterprises have come under the attack of the phishing attacks. However, people are aware of this scam. However, still, the cybercriminal finds humans. As a soft target to launch phishing scam once. Then, later on, get all the credentials of any enterprise and use it for any malice purpose.
The core purpose of phishing attacks is to obtain personal and financial information. Of the users and then misuse the information. Such as credit card information, bank account, etc.
According to the recent research done by Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG). Most of the phishing attacks reported during the past few years have targeted the famous brands. Like Apple, Paypal, Chinese marketplace Taobao, etc. This indicates that the Phishers keep on updating their approaches. So as to fool their victims in a way that is less likely to be traced back.
What is Phishing?
Phishing is a technique of scamming which is done by sending fake emails to the soft target users. That email contains a link that directs the user to a fake website. That seems reliable to the user. Learn 10 cyber security tips you need to know. Here the user gets caught in the trap. And thinks that the website he is directed to is a genuine one. This fake website asks the user to give his financial information. Like credit card details and bank account. So, without letting the user know that he has been under phishing attacks. After acquiring this confidential information. The cybercriminals make use of this information for their criminal purposes to make money illegally.
Although there is a strict law against cybercrime and identity theft exist. Cybercriminals and hackers find a way out. This crime does not seem to end soon. So, all we should do is to be careful on the internet. We should not be fool by such cyber criminals. And should save ourselves from being the victim of phishing attacks.
How is a Phishing Attack Done?
The act of Phishing is done by randomly sending emails to the bulk of users; it can be millions or even more than it. The phisher then estimates the number of users who have read the malicious email. Then they count on those users who have a genuine account on the website where the user is being directed to the email. However, this website that seems real, and the users who are directed to that website can easily get caught in the snare if they do not have any anti-virus software.
The users who become victims think that the website they are giving their confidential information to is the legitimate one. But in fact, it is a fake website that is deliberately designed to fool the users and steal their personal and financial details.
The concept of Phishing Attack
The concept of the term Phishing is derived from verb fishing. The technique of Phishing is somewhat similar to the act of Fishing. When we intend to fishing, we throw a fishing rod with a bait and then wait for any fish to get caught in the fishing rod and take that fish to the home. Likewise, the phishers send emails blindly as we throw fishing rods. Here bait is the link present in the email address that seems legitimate to the users, and some of them get caught as the fish get caught. The only difference is that we go fishing for the sake of hobby and fun, while the phishers attempt phishing to make a good deal of money by illegal means.
Why is Phishing a Threat for You?
The answer to this question of why Phishing attacks are a threat to you is pretty much evident. Who likes to lose the confidentiality of financial information and become the victim of identity theft? Of course, none of us likes to be under phishing attacks. The reason behind this is the phishing attacks are a serious threat to your privacy as well as it can cause a significant loss of money (read more about online privacy threats and how you can improve your online privacy in our ultimate privacy guide).
If you get into the trap set by the phisher and give all your credit card details and other financial information then there is a bright chance for you to lose all the money in your bank account and even lose the access to your own account. This will benefit the phisher big time and will lead you to face a huge money loss that can bring some miserable problems too.
How to Protect Yourself From Phishing Attacks?
This world has become a breeding place for risks and threats to the security of the people living around the globe. Whether it is the internet world or the real world, we all are concern about our security and privacy. When it comes to online security, the online world which is full of scam and hacking needs to be hacking free and cyber-crime free (learn 7 ways to avoid being hacked). But this seems nothing but a mere dream to the people who are suffering from the threat of insecurity over the internet.
However, there are many laws against cybercrimes. However, unfortunately, in spite of all the efforts of the authorities, they are unable to finish cyber crimes and phishing attacks completely. Hence, being cautious over the internet is the only way to protect yourself from phishing attacks and identity theft. Where the scammers and hackers are working hard to find their prey, the netizens should be watchful and avoid giving away their personal and financial details over the internet especially to the non-reliable websites and avoid clicking the links sent to you from the unknown sender.
5 Tips to Protect Yourself Against Phishing Attacks
Follow the simple tips given below and protect yourself from phishing attacks over the internet.
Know About it
Learn how to find out whether the email may contain a phishing attempt or not. How you can do that is by looking at the email correctly, if there is a duplicate image or the copied name of the employee of the company or the bank. There can be an exciting offer in the email to attract you so that you click the link and step into the trap. Here, you need to be very vigilant, because copy remains copy and somehow if you look closely to the email you may find that something is surely wrong with that email. Here you need to trust your guts. If it says something is wrong, then there might be everything is wrong.
You should check the information asked in the email. Your bank or investment company you will never ask for your pin code or password by email. If you have doubts, so it is better to call your bank or company to ensure the legitimacy of the email you are doubting. Never click any link in the email for it might drive you to the fraudulent website and cause you to lose the confidentiality of your financial details. If you want to visit your bank website or any investment company website, we recommend you to never go from the link given to you in the email. It is better to type the link in the address bar yourself or bookmark your bank’s URL and go from there.
If you want to stay protected against Phishing Attacks – 5 Tips To Protect Yourself over the internet, it is necessary for you to upgrade the security level of your computer. Install any renowned antivirus that can protect you from the threats round the clock and try to keep your antivirus, operating system, and web browser updated and secure by using reliable security software as a secure VPN (get the most secure VPN services) to avoid phishing attacks or things like that.
Keep a Check on Your Bank Account
- You must check the bank statement of your account routinely. This will keep you updated on the record of the transaction you make, and if there will be any irregular transaction occurring, you will be able to rectify it and report to your bank and take action on time. So it is always wise to check on your bank statement at least once in a month.
Conclusion- Phishing Attacks – 5 Tips To Protect Yourself
In addition to the tips mentioned above, you should be aware of the fact that phishing is not only confined to the emails but the attempt of phishing can be made via social networks like eBay, Facebook, etc. So you should be cautious about social networking websites and avoid giving your account details to social networking websites or any other website.
However, there is no shield in the market that you wear and be 100% safe against hacking and phishing scams. But all you can do is to make possible efforts to stay safe over the internet and reduce the chances of being the victim of the phishing attacks and losing the confidentiality of your financial data such as your bank credit card information or the details of your investment made in any company.