What is phishing? And how to prevent it

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Viral News Boy :- What is phishing?

Phishing is the fraudulent attempt to obtain sensitive information, or data, such as usernames, passwords and credit card details by disguising oneself as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication.  

Types of phishing

There are many types of Phishing Attacks and Phishing Scams carried out by hackers. A few of them are:

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1.Email phishing:

Many business owners are unaware about the insecure and fraud links and emails. For e.g. the victim gets an e-mail from the hacker to check some unknown transactions in their business bank account, with a fake link attached to a site which is almost as good as real. Without thinking for a second, the victim opens the fake link and enters the account details and passwords. That’s it. You are attacked.

2.Spear phishing:

Spear phishing is an email attack done by a foe pretending to be your friend. To make their attack successful, these fraudsters invest in a lot of time to gather specific information about their victims; i.e. victim’s name, position in company, his contact information etc.

They later customise their emails, with the gathered information, thus tricking the victim to believe that the email is sent from a trustworthy source.

Fake URL and email links are attached in the email asking for private information. Spear phishing emails are targeted towards individuals as well as companies to steal sensitive information for making millions.

3.Domain spoofing:

Here the attacker forges the domain of the company, to impersonate its victims. Since the victim receives an email with the same domain name of the company, they believe that it’s from trusted sources, and hence are victimised.

Before a few years there were only 2 types of phishing attacks.

4.Vishing:

VoIP (Voice) + Phishing = Vishing.

Till now phishing attacks were made by sending emails. But when attacks are done by targeting mobile numbers, it’s called Vishing or Voice Phishing.

5.Clone phishing:

Clone means duplicate or identical. Giving justice to the name, Clone Phishing is when an email is cloned by the fraudster, to create another identical and perfect email to trap employees.

Since it’s a perfect replica of the original one, fraudsters take advantage of its legitimate look and are successful in their malicious intentions.

There are many other phishing attacks.  

How to prevent phishing attacks

Precautions & Preventions of Phishing Attacks:

  • Re-check URL before clicking unknown or suspicious links
  • Do not open suspicious emails or short links
  • Change passwords frequently
  • Educate and train your employees for identifying and ceasing phishing attacks
  • Re-Check for secured sites; i.e. HTTPS sites
  • Install latest anti-virus software, anti-phishing software and anti-phishing toolbars
  • Don’t install anything from unknown sources
  • Always opt for 2-factor authentication
  • Trust your instincts
  • Update your systems with latest security measures
  • Install web-filtering tools for malicious emails
  • Use SSL security for encryption
  • Report phishing attacks and scams to APWG (Anti-Phishing Working Group)

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