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Phishing

PhishingWhat Is Phishing?

Phishing is the act of sending a message/email to a user falsely claiming to be an established legitimate enterprise in an attempt to procure the user’s private information, such as passwords.

A phishing email/message usually directs the user to a website which looks very much like the real/legit website.

They are asked to update/provide their personal information, such as a password, bank account numbers, usernames etc., that the legitimate organization already has.

The website, however, is fake and will capture and steal any information the user enters on the page and the information can be viewed by the hacker.

Phishing has caused millions of users to lose their identity and eventually lead to loss of their money, private details such as passwords, etc.

How It’s Done

Phishing is one of the most common types of account infiltration used by hackers as it requires comparatively less effort but still has great potential.

The hackers phish by replicating a legitimate website such as Facebook, Paypal, Twitter etc., and then send the link of the replicated websites to various users of that legit website.

The fake website also has codes input by the hackers that allows them to store the information that the user had typed.

When the user types in the private information, hackers are able to use it in the original/legitimate website; hence they’re able to control the account of the user.

The Major Types Of Phishing Are:

  • Email / Spam / Instant messaging: Phishing with email and spam/instant messaging is a very common way of phishing. In this type of phishing, the phishers send an email/message to the user with an urgent note (informing that their account has been suspended or has to be updated). The email also has a link which redirects the user to the above mentioned fake website. The fake website then requests the user to fill in personal details. These details will be used by the phishers for their illegal activities.
  • Link Manipulation: Link manipulation is the technique in which the phisher sends a fake link to a user/website. The website URL seems exactly identical to the link of the legit website but the trick is that the link is manipulated and the link redirects to a completely different website/phisher’s website, from where viruses or trojans are inserted into your computer. One of the easiest techniques used to prevent link manipulation is to move the mouse over the link to view the actual address.

The Dangers Of Phishing

Your private details including credit card details can be disclosed and can result in loss of money.

Your account can be hacked and messages can be sent to various people without your knowledge.

By August 2015, approximately 80 million cases of phishing were reported.

Out of the email traffic, 56.35% were reported to be spam. This means that there is a great chance of users falling in the hands of phishers.

More Statistics Can Be Found Out Here:

  1. https://securelist.com/analysis/quarterly-spam-reports/69932/spam-and-phishing-in-the-first-quarter-of-2015/ https://securelist.com/analysis/quarterly-spam-reports/71759/spam-and-phishing-in-q2-of-2015/

How To Prevent

If you receive an e-mail, be sure to check their email address and make sure that it’s a legit one.

Call the company from a trusted phone number (go to company website) and verify that they sent you the email.

View The Message Carefully: Phishers usually include urgent actions in their messages.

So be wary for urgent actions that need immediate attention.

Check The Web Address: Although you may be in a site that looks exactly same as the real one, be sure to check the web address as phishers can’t produce the web address of the actual website.

You can also check for security certificates, most of the legit websites have security certificates like SSL which is sure to be missed on the phisher’s website.

Forward all phishing emails to spam@uce.gov or reportphishing@antiphishing.org, to the company, bank, or organization impersonated in the email.

Summary
Article Name
Phishing
Description
Phishing is the act of sending a message/email to a user falsely claiming to be an established legitimate enterprise in an attempt to procure the user's private information, such as passwords.
Author
Publisher Name
No Identity Theft
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  • Cheska J

    I’ve received numerous emails falsely claiming they were Paypal and they needed my details because they were doing some “security check”. LOL. Good thing I wasn’t dumb enough to fall for it and immediately reported them to Customer Support. This phishing scheme is very very and I mean very heavily practiced but good thing I use gmail and they usually end up in the SPAM folder, so I don’t need to waste my time going through them. Bigger measures should be done to address and get the people behind this, they are in no means practicing illegal business and violating our rights.

  • Jayson Crackle

    There are so many ways that you can really get caught by something like this. All you have to do is worry about what you are doing online and you should be safe. If an email is from an entrusted source, just delete it. There is no reason to open it if you are not recognizing the person sending it.

  • Hey Jayson. You would be surprised how many people open emails from strangers and believe what they say. There are a lot of gullible people out there and that is why phishing is such a problem. If you are aware then it shouldn’t be a problem, but unfortunately a lot of people just don’t pay attention.

  • Glad you didn’t fall for that scam Cheska! No reputable company will ever ask you for your personal information through email. If you are ever skeptical about anything that is sent to you, always call the company that the email has come from to verify if it was really sent by them. If people did that, there would be zero phishing scams.

  • Angela Christu

    I was so curios about what the word “phishing” meant! And yes! I have almost been “caught” SEVERAL times by this scam. My first reaction was to click that link in the email warning me of one thing or another, but then fortunately, something catches my eye that makes me think twice about it. I am super thankful for companies like yours who are exposing this type of activity. If one is unaware, they really have no idea what is happening, and are likely to follow along and give personal information and falling prey to this “hook”. We have a whole other criminal world taking place online. We as a community need more knowledge and awareness to stay safe.

  • Anas

    Nice information. This post is very helpful for me and all.
    Thanks No Identity Theft staff writer to protecting and updating us.

  • I recognise that those pishing attacks become more and more professional. Nevertheless, never open Emails from unknown person or institutions, don’t open any emails with strange content.As you apply to some of these rules into your daily work, you will have less problems with Pishing-Mails and viruses.

  • B Law

    I think Phishing is one of the most dangerous cyber crimes out there. The phishers are extremely intelligent in the sense that they know exactly what to put in a head line to get someone to open an email although the sender is unfamiliar and unknown.

    If you do not have firewalls and/or antivirus software, given the statistics in this post with over half of internet traffic being spam, you are really asking for trouble. Phishing is not a game. They will lure you in with a great headline and once you are captured you will be sent off to a mock site, one that looks legit. There you will enter in all of the information they need to bring you to your knees financially. Aside from that, you run the risk of losing personal information. Everything on your computer will be at risk, right along with your finances.

    I spend a lot of time on the internet. I love reading articles, I am the kind of person who still puts their email address into landing pages hoping to see a video that will teach me something new for free and because of that, my inbox is always flooded with strangers. Honestly, like most other people, I didn’t have any respect for phishing. I didn’t know it was dangerous. I thought it was something internet marketers who are without ethics did. It wasn’t until I got my first virus. Literally, the only way I could have gotten the virus was from opening mail from an unknown sender because I am not much of a downloader. I didn’t have any firewalls on my computer during the time of the breach and it cost me over $70 to get my laptop back up and running properly without any glitches. For the record, the money I paid to get my computer working again was nothing compared to what I lost. I lost a lot of important data and work behind that virus. Also, since then I have been nerve wrecked wondering if the people who sent me the virus got any of my information. For that reason, I’ve been looking for something that will help monitor my personal information in the event it winds up somewhere online that I didn’t authorize it to be.

  • B Law

    I am still surprised by the amount of people who have no clue what “phishing” means. These very same people and more have also never heard of the dark web, nor do they know the extent of the crime. They have no idea that they have the potential to be threatened in ways that can continue to affect them or wreck havoc a year down the line.

    “Super thankful,” is almost an understatement when you think about what it could cost a person once they have been phished. I feel super indebted to companies that protect people against these sorts of crimes. I mean the criminal phishers online make the most alluring advertisements, it’s almost hard to believe the person is a criminal.

    I do not think people have respect for the dangers they can get into online should their information fall into the hands of someone looking to do damage. I also do not think people understand how potentially damaging it is to have something foreign fed into your computer system that is there to feed, leach, and ruin sensitive data.

    I am in total agreement with you. As a community of online users, we have to be aware of what is out there and we have to protect ourselves against it. I cannot stop thinking about the statistics shared in the post. Over 80 million phishing incidents? EVERYONE is at risk. With that said, not having a service that will protect you and your computer against phishing and whatever the end result of the phisher is seems silly.

  • Pam

    Phishing is horrible. It can do so much damage so incredibly quickly. Because it’s caused problems for me in the past I definitely follow the protocol of checking email and web addresses before sending anything or agreeing to anything. Paypal and Ebay have horrible phishing issues. Thanks for putting great tips out there on how to avoid these issues.

  • Ernest Kulyk

    Yes! Been there, learned a lot. And have something to tell you, because who better than Phishing-victim knows how to secure yourself next time? I have searched internet far and wide so here’s my tips:

    First thing you always must remember: your password is only yours. You need your password only to gain access to a particular service, and only you should know it. Be careful when receiving emails from unknown senders and e-mails, asking you to click on a link.

    Use multiple e-mail addresses. I advice you to simply create at least two e-mails: public and private. This tip I’ve received from few most careful internet users. Also never publish your personal (private) e-mail address on the public Internet resources. And never-ever respond to spam. Most spammers are fixing your answers. Usually, the more you replying to spam, the more they get.

    Always use latest versions of browsers and licensed Anti-Virus Software. Always check your address bar to make sure you entering your password on a proper web-site. Be sure to check out if secure HTTPS connection established while you using web-sites of banks.

    If you suspect that you’ve experienced a Phishing attack, be sure to immediately change a password of your account and contact security service of organization, which Phishing scammers received your data from. Although the Internet is virtual, it penetrated so deep inside our lives, that the harm, caused by Phishing, may be quite material. I’m speaking from experience. So be careful!

    Also I can highly recommend ID Theft Protection services like Identity Guard or LifeLock. By using one of these services, you will get some serenity and confidence in your safety.

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