Phishing emails invade inboxes daily. In fact, email is the main source of hacked personal and business accounts.
The good news?
By implementing 5 easy steps, we can armor our inboxes, our networks, our lives against hackers. Let’s outsmart this headache before it begins!
The easiest way for Hackers to plunder our personal information is through email. Phishing emails invade. These dormant destroyers sit silently. Anticipating. Like Pandora's box, waiting to be discovered.
Take hope! Practicing the 5 steps above arm and advance to prevent cyber incidents. Together, we can conquer phishing emails!
Keep reading and learn 5 easy ways to counter phishing emails!
1 - Analyze Email Addresses
Phishing emails mimic legitimate addresses. Villains incorporate genuine company names within the composition of both web addresses and emails. How to counter-attack?
Notice the sender’s email address. In a brief moment, analyzing the address reveals if the sender is genuine or a hoax. A high-jacked version of someone else’s email address may read “@hilton.rewards” versus an authentic sender, such as “@hilton.com”.
Extend your counter-attack technique into the body of the email. That is, analyze every link within the text by hovering/inspecting before clicking. Why? Because criminals cleverly interweave malicious and authentic links throughout emails.
2- Beware of Bad Grammar
This is the most obvious mode of defense. If the structure or grammar within the body of the message leaves you raising an eyebrow, it's most likely a phish!
Phishing Email Grammar Alerts:
Awkward Manners of Expression
Keep in mind that businesses invest in advertising. Professional writers and editors are hired. Legality, grammar, and spelling are valued. So, when a business email contains mistakes in these areas, it smells like a phish.
Why do these poorly written emails still circulate?
We've wondered the same. Intriguingly, authors Levitt and Dubner may have an answer. They suggest that poorly written emails eliminate “false positive” responses.
Hence, these emails actually shape the target audience for the hackers. Criminals know they're most likely to succeed in conning money from persons gullible enough to respond to these poorly-crafted emails.
Adversely, persons clued into the illegitimacy (by the poor craftsmanship) of these emails are a waste of the hackers' time.
3 - Stay Smart (never share personal information)
Authenticity is the hacker’s goal. Great lengths are taken. An email may replicate the style used by your bank, or even your own company.
However, "sound the alarm!" whenever unusual requests are made.
Does the email request unusual personal information (banking details or login credentials)?
In this case, stay smart, and stay away. If there’s reason to believe this email could be valid, contact the company directly. Ignore the contact information offered within this email!
4 - Don’t React When Rattled!
Provoking panic is an age-old phishing technique. Unfortunately, it’s still in use today. Whether an email claims that your account teeters on the brink of closure, or that it is compromised (requiring your login information for verification), you must fight the temptation to respond immediately.
Take a breather, Be MINDFUL, Ask questions:
“Does this email provoke anxiety?”
“Does this message request a reasonable response?”
If not feeling 100% settled about an email, contact the sender company via venues outside of this email. And never, ever give personal information or account information to this source.
5 - Test Attachments
Red flags should blaze wildly on your radar if a random company sends an email with an attachment to your inbox. If the attachment's subject matter isn’t anticipated by you, then it probably isn’t safe.
How unsafe? This attachment might contain a malicious trojan or URL.
Click, and boom: the virus or malware installation process begins. Scanning attachments ( even legit ones ) with anti-viral software keeps your PC or network secure.
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