Phishing attacks are becoming more sophisticated and widespread and it is essential to know how to protect yourself from them. With the help of smartphones, phishers can now target victims on their mobile devices as well. It’s crucial to understand what a phishing attack looks like so that you can spot one before becoming a victim.
We’ve all seen them – emails, text messages, and even phone calls that seem legitimate. But they’re not. They are phishing scams created by hackers who want to steal your personal information or access to your accounts. As a small business owner or employee, it is important to know how to spot a phishing scam so that you don’t become a victim. Let’s talk about what to look for and then what you can do if you find a potential scam.
What Does A Phishing Scam Look Like?
The most common type of phishing scams come in the form of emails, but they can also be sent via text message or phone call. If someone is asking you for personal information such as your bank account number, Social Insurance Number, password, PIN number, credit card number, etc., be wary. Legitimate companies will never ask for sensitive information via email or text message. Anything requesting this kind of data should immediately raise a red flag.
Another warning sign is something called “spear-phishing” where the hacker sends an email that appears to be from a legitimate source such as your bank or another company you do business with regularly or even a fellow employee. The email will contain language specific to the company and may even use their logo in the header of the email. It may seem real at first glance but if something doesn’t feel right about it – trust your instincts! Don’t click any links contained in these emails and delete them immediately without opening any attachments that may have been included with it.
If you suspect a phishing scam in an email in particular you can easily check by clicking on the sender’s name and confirming the email address is correct before proceeding. If it still doesn’t feel right, reach out to the sender via another means of communication (possibly by phone). You should also never be sending sensitive data via email as email is not a secure form of communication.
What To Do When You Find A Phishing Scam?
If you receive an email from someone claiming to be from a legitimate source such as your bank, your employer a fellow employee, or a company you work with that looks suspiciously like a phishing scam, there are several things you can do.
- First and foremost, do not reply directly to the email as this could give away more personal information than you realize that could potentially compromise your accounts or other data associated with them. Instead, contact the actual company directly using their official customer service line (not the one listed in the suspicious email) and let them know about it so they can investigate further if necessary.
- Additionally, report any suspicious activity related to online accounts directly through those services (such as Apple ID) and to your IT department if you have one. This way they can continue monitoring for similar activity going forward which helps protect everyone else who uses their service too!
No one wants to become a victim of identity theft due to falling prey to a phishing scam so it is important for us all to remain vigilant when it comes to our online security measures and practices. Knowing what signs to look out for when checking emails on our iPhones or Androids is just one step we can take towards better protecting ourselves from hackers who want access our private information and accounts. Be sure always double-check before giving out any sensitive data over email or text message – and if something doesn’t feel right – don’t hesitate reach out directly through official customer service channels just in case! Keeping yourself informed of best practices when it comes digital safety is key!