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what is phishing? How it works and how to prevent it?

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What is phishing? 

Phishing is a very common cybersecurity attack. It is necessary for all the people who use communication tools such as email and SMS to be familiar with it.

What is the definition of Phishing?

What is the definition of Phishing?

Phishing refers to a deceptive activity that intends to purloin confidential and secret user data like credit card numbers, usernames and passwords. It is typically conducted by utilizing email or other kinds of electronic communication. They just want to convince the user that they are from a trustworthy entity.

How does phishing work?

Phishing works based on the messages that are sent to the users. They pretend to be from a reliable company or website. A clickable link is included in these messages that transfers the user to a counterfeit website that is very similar to the real one. The user is requested to enter personal data, like their credit card number. This data is then misused to purloin the person’s information or to make unauthorized withdrawals and charges on their credit card.

What are the techniques of phishing?

What are the techniques of phishing?

There are some techniques that are used for phishing attacks that are pursued all over the world. Some of these techniques are:

1.SMS phishing

This is usually done by sending SMSs to the users. They pretend to be a reliable and legitimate organization. This SMS will contain content that will ask recipients to reveal their confidential and secret information. They usually contain deleterious links.

2.Pharming

This is usually done by changing an IP address to transfer the user to a malevolent website rather than a real website. When you enter your personal data on the wrong site, hackers can misuse your data for cheating activities.

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3.Voice Phishing

They make use of phone calls for obtaining a person’s secret and confidential data. This is typically conducted by establishing Voice over Internet Protocol that contributes to a phisher to emulate a trustworthy company. You may be requested to provide information connected to your credit card or login credentials.

4.Dating frauds

Hackers make use of dating sites and social media to deceive users by beginning an online romantic relationship. The hacker gradually begins requesting money from the user.

what is phishing? How it works and how to prevent it?

What are the different kinds of phishing scams?

There are some different kinds of phishing scams including:

1.Loyalty program fraud

Different loyalty point programs are available these days. Still, they are not completely safe. It is very easy for phishers to get into these accounts and make use of the points in your account.  They can also gain access to secret information that is saved in your loyalty account like the account number, credit card number and other information.

2.Text-based injection

In this method, some content on a website is altered so that the users will be redirected to a malevolent website by clicking on this content. The user will then be requested to enter personal information.

3.Session hijacking

It refers to the exploitation of a computer session. This is conducted by gaining illegal access to computer information or services. The attacker assumes control of the user session by finding the session cookie.

4.Whaling

Whaling is a technique that is used to deceive famous people in companies like CEO, COO, etc.

How can you prevent phishing?

How can you prevent phishing?

1.Execute proper technical actions

It is recommendable to utilize strong cyber security measures to inhibit as many phishing efforts as possible.

2.Create a positive security system

You should know that social engineering usually succeeds since its doers are great at exploitation. You must not blame employees for being attacked but motivate them to report problems. If you want to punish them, your employees do not accept their mistakes, endanger your company even further.

3.Be familiar with the psychological stimuli

All social engineering attacks concentrate on human psychology in order to overcome victims’ natural caution, like;

1.Generating a wrong sense of urgency and intense emotion to bewilder their victims

2.Misusing the human inclination for reciprocation by generating a sense of indebtedness

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4.Train your employees

Any employee might become the victim of a phishing attack, so all staff must receive the necessary training about the attacks that they may encounter. Regular employee training will help everyone become familiar with the signs of a phishing attack and its possible outcomes. So they can report potential phishing attacks as soon as they face them, based on the company policy.

5.Ensure the efficiency of the training

You can simulate phishing attacks in order to ensure the efficiency of the employees’ consciousness training and which staff might require extra training.

How to recognize phishing attacks?

How to recognize phishing attacks?

In order to avoid being the victim of a phishing email, you must be cognizant of the common methods that they utilize. They usually make use of the following strategies;

1.Requesting personal or confidential information

Phishing emails will often ask you to give your personal and sensitive information, like your credit card number or usernames and passwords. They may request you certify your account information or create a link that redirects you to a counterfeit website.

2.Producing a sense of urgency

Phishing emails will usually make use of an “urgency” strategy by declaring that your account has been endangered or that you must take instant action to prevent negative effects.

3.Utilizing email spoofing

Email spoofing is a strategy that is used by phishers to pretend to be from a legal source, like your bank or credit card company. They may also make use of logos of the legal company to convince the recipients that they are reliable emails.

4.Using attachments or links

Phishing emails usually contain attachments or links that direct users to a website that intends to purloin users personal data. These websites are usually very similar to a legal website, but their URL differs.

If the email you receive includes any one of these issues, you should be careful before replying. You can also make sure that the email is sent from the stated company by visiting their website.  Ultimately, you can also contact the company to be certain of the legitimacy of the email.

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