Phishing attacks have been around since the inception of the internet. It is one of the common security challenges faced by companies of all sizes. Nobody wants to fall prey to phishing scams, as it leads to a severe financial loss. From unauthorized access to stealing the data – hackers use a wide range of phishing techniques.
Fortunately, there are many ways to prevent becoming a victim of the biggest cyber-attack. In this post, we will help you know about phishing attacks and how to avoid them.
What is phishing?
Phishing is a popular technique used by cybercriminals to trap the users into giving sensitive information. The hackers steal the password, bank account numbers, and social security numbers by accessing your personal information. It is estimated that companies suffer a loss of more than $30 million every year due to phishing.
How to identify phishing?
The cybercriminals often update their tactics from time to time. But, there are some signs that will help you identify a phishing email.
- Phishing emails look like they’re from reputed companies like – public/private banks, financial institutions, online payment websites, online stores or a social networking site.
- Phishing emails often have a story to trick you into clicking on the link. For example – a suspicious transaction on your bank account ‘or’ claim a coupon with a free gift, etc. The phishing mail may even include a fake invoice or coupon for a free trip.
At a glance, the email might look real, but it’s not. Phishing emails can have strong impact on the people who give their information. It can severely harm the reputation of the company they are spoofing.
Tips to avoid phishing attacks
Although the email spam filter keeps phishing emails out of the inbox, the hackers try to outsmart the spam filters by using advanced tools. It is always a good idea to add an extra layer of protection to your inbox. In order to avoid a phishing attack, here are some tips –
- Protect your devices by using securities software. Make sure to set the software to update automatically so that it can deal with new security threats. Keep informed about the latest phishing techniques to be at a lower risk of getting snared by a hacker.
- Protect your device using multi-factor authentication, which is a combination of passwords and biometrics. This kind of protection makes it harder for scammers to log into your accounts even if they get your username and password.
- Backup the data from time to time and store it in secured cloud storage. Do not connect the backups to your home network. Instead, copy the files directly to cloud storage or external drive.
- Install an anti-phishing toolbar on your web browser to run quick checks on the sites that you often visit. These tools can compare them with the list of phishing sites. The toolbar alerts you if you come across a malicious site.
- Use high-quality firewalls that act as a buffer between your computer and cybercriminals. Make sure to use a desktop firewall along with a network firewall. This can drastically reduce the odds of hackers infiltrating your computer network.
How to respond to phishing attacks?
If you think have been a victim of a phishing attack and the scammer has your information, you can take some steps based on the information you have lost. If you think you have opened a malicious link, update your computer’s security software and scan your device.
There are multiple steps to protect against phishing. Make sure to keep a pulse on current techniques and confirm the security policy of your organization. Make sure that your employees understand the type of attacks they may face and how to address them.
The key to protecting your company from a phishing attack is to enhance the IT security of your organization by choosing the best data security solution.
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