Hackers Are Trying to Reel You in Through Email
Email is an essential part or our everyday communications. It is also one of the most common methods that hackers use to attempt to gain access to sensitive information. More than 90% of data breaches start with a phishing attack. Phishing uses fraudulent email messages designed to impersonate a legitimate person or organization. They attempt to trick the recipient into downloading harmful attachments or divulging sensitive information, including passwords, bank account numbers, and social security numbers.
Phishing scams can have a number of different goals. They may attempt to:
- Target your cash and payment card data
- Gain control of your computer and local network resources
- Gain insight of your company’s “decision makers”
Phishing scams typically attempt to take advantage of you by:
- Delivering file attachments that can infect your computer with harmful software
- Enticing you to click on links to websites that infect your computer with harmful software
- Tricking you into sharing your username and password so hackers can gain access to your network or other sites
Phish Like Spam
Spam is unwanted “junk” email that can quickly fill your email inbox. Never respond to a spam email or click on a link in a spam email message. Doing so validates your email address to the spammer and increases the likelihood of you receiving still more spam.
Most of the time, spam is annoying, but harmless. However, sometimes what appears to be just a spam message is actually a phishing attempt. Trojan horses and other malicious software are often attached to spam emails. These emails also sometimes contain links to websites that will download software intended to compromise your computer. So beware of spam emails!