Protect Yourself Online: Email Phishing

Protect Yourself Online: Email Phishing

There are some simple steps you can take to protect yourself online. This week, we are focusing on identifying email phishing.

'Phishing' is the fraudulent attempt to get sensitive information such as usernames, passwords and credit card details by pretending to be a trustworthy company or person through email.

Even if you are very comfortable with technology, identifying phishing emails can be harder than you think. There are very effective tricks phishing emails use to obtain your information by pretending to be someone you know.

Can you tell what's fake? Ready to put that to the test?

Google has created Jigsaw, a free phishing quiz which tests your ability to correctly identifying phishing attempts and provides detailed advice on what to look out for.

Action Fraud, a service run by the City of London Police and the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) have provided some guidance on phishing:

Between April 2018 and March 2019, social media and email account compromises were the most reported form of cybercrime to Action Fraud, with victims losing a combined total of £19m.

Many frauds start with a phishing email. Remember that banks and financial institutions will not send you an email asking you to click on a link and confirm your bank details.

Do not trust such emails, even if they look genuine. You can always call your bank using the phone number on a genuine piece of correspondence, website (typed directly into the address bar) or the phone book to check if you're not sure.

  • Never automatically click on a link in an unexpected email or text.
  • Remember, email addresses and phone numbers can be spoofed, so don't use those as a means to verify that a message or call is authentic.
  • The best way to get in touch with a company is to use a known email or phone number, such as the one on the back of your bank card.

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