Cybercriminals are making strides every year to increase the sophistication of phishing attacks. It is becoming extremely difficult to identify fake messages, leading to a higher percentage of successful phishing campaigns. While many faulty emails take numerous forms, many of the prevention methods are universal. In this course, users will take a glance at seven highly effective quick tips for fostering phishing safety.
Check for Grammatical Errors
Attackers are often in a rush, leading to many mistakes in the copy of their email. They rely on victims overlooking grammatical mistakes and quickly clicking on a malicious link or responding with elements of sensitive data. Take time to fully read each email, identify misspelled words or incorrect punctuations, and utilize strong reading comprehension to determine potential dangers associated with the message.
Be Cautious of Emergency Language
Cybercriminals thrive on chaos. They are constantly luring victims into believing they have made a tremendous error and only have a limited amount of time to respond before facing critical consequences. Don’t fall victim to scare tactics. The only immediate action that should be taken after receiving an urgent email seeking personal information is to report the message to IT security.
Check the Sender Address Thoroughly
In most scenarios, phishing emails will come from a very suspicious sender. The name may look familiar, but the address will often be the immediate indicator of a phish. Hovering over the name without clicking will reveal the true address of the sender. If it doesn’t resemble a legitimate email, the phish should be reported right away.
Always Hover Before Clicking
Hovering is also very useful for investigating other elements of a phish including links or attachments. The destination indicated by hovering over a link should always match what the message is insinuating. Regardless of how confident a user is in an email, it is best to always hover and study before aimlessly clicking on potentially dangerous links.
Use a Zero Trust Policy with Attachments and Links
Links and attachments are two of the most effective tools for attackers. Often filled with malware, links and attachments are capable of dealing damage by infecting critical software and stealing sensitive data. users must always use a zero trust policy when it comes to opening attachments or clicking off of an email. Verified confirmation through direct communication is necessary before proceeding. Users can avoid the threat of links or attachments altogether by utilizing secure methods of sharing such as cloud-based technology.
Be Overprotective With Sensitive Data
Though it may seem time-consuming, it is always best to assess the risk, necessity, and method of sharing data before proceeding. Regardless of who is asking, take time to consider potential dangers of sharing data in the method that is being requested. Consider the reason why the asker would need the data and if they could proceed without it. Lastly, consider all methods available and make the safest decision. Legitimate emails that come from co-workers or verified individuals will be more than happy to accommodate the necessary precautions.
Perform Regular Updates
Finally, users should always check their devices for updates. Technology updates ensure that the latest security measures are in place to prevent cybercriminals from taking advantage of gaps in older software. Security updates can also help prevent phishing emails or other threatening messages from entering the inbox.
It is becoming extremely difficult to identify fake messages, leading to a higher percentage of successful phishing campaigns. While many faulty emails take numerous forms, many of the prevention methods are universal. Seven quick tips to improve phishing security include checking for grammatical errors, Using caution with emergency language, checking the sender address, hovering before clicking, using zero trust with attachments and links, overprotecting sensitive data, and performing regular updates.
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