Phishing – How to Avoid Being Caught Hook, Link and Sinker

Anyone can be the victim of phishing. Whether it’s a password, a phone number or credit card details, cyber-criminals are experts in pretending to be a trustworthy source who can offer something you need. 

It can be harder to spot than you may first realise. Phishing scams can be convincing through its use of visuals and tone of writing. Pay close attention before you share sensitive information. 

According to the APGW report, phishing in Q1 of 2020 was the highest it had been since March 2016, with 60,000 phishing sites found in March alone. Recently, ProPrivacy found that phishing scams have been more targeted and realistic, with a quarter of COVID related websites being treated as suspicious.  

With this in mind, level up your knowledge of the types of scams. Spear phishing is a highly targeted social engineering attack where the cyber-criminal pretends to be an authoritative source. Whaling, or CEO fraud, is when high level employees are targeted by cyber-criminals disguised as a senior company figure. 

What steps can you take to protect your business from phishing? Start by paying attention to emails or text messages that look dubious, especially any which ask for payment details. Common warning signs include emails regarding unusual account activity, a problem with your card and a fake discount code. Just remember to think before you click. 

Use two-factor authentication as this will protect yourself from hackers who do not have access to your entire login operation. Consider using a password manager to keep your passwords and data secure. 

A team that can identify phishing scams are less likely to be susceptible to an attack. Make sure your fellow employees are up to date with the latest malware and security developments. Pay attention to URLs to determine whether they are legitimate. Check to see if the web address is HTTP or HTTPS as this will tell you whether the link is secure.  

The best way to protect yourself from phishing scams is to have the right tools at your disposal. Installing a cyber-defense solution that regularly updates itself will keep you safe against new threats and industry trends. Talk to us about how we can protect your business from phishing scandals and increase your cyber-security.