How to safeguard yourself from phishing attacks
Phishing attacks are on a rise. Several reports in the past two years have detailed that the Covid-19 pandemic has witnessed a drastic increase in phishing attacks. Cyber scammers are using new and innovative means of defrauding innocent users into responding to an email or clicking on a link, or downloading an image file carrying malware that can lead to users losing their confidential information including their financial data and their personal information.
According to Microsoft’s Global Tech Support Fraud Scam Research 2021, millennials in India aged 24-37 years were the most susceptible to such scams in 2021 with 58% of those that continued with the scam incurring monetary loss. Amid the present scenario, it is important that users take proactive measures in safeguarding themself from phishing scams. So, here are the top seven ways using which, you can avoid becoming a victim to a phishing scam:
Inspect sender’s e-mail address
While it's not unusual to receive an email from someone outside your organisation for the first time, it can be a sign of phishing. Inspect the sender’s email address closely. Look for small changes signalling a fake identity
Double-check urgent call-to-action mails
Be wary of emails that utilise a generic greeting, asking you to act urgently. Often, they'll claim you must act now to claim a reward or avoid a penalty. Creating a false sense of urgency is a common trick of phishing attacks and scams.
Verify sender information
Look for verifiable sender contact information. If in doubt, do not reply. Start a new email to respond.
Safeguard private information
Use the phone to convey private information. Never send sensitive information via email.
Don’t click suspicious links
Avoid clicking on unexpected links. Go to the official website and log in instead.
Be wary of attachments
Avoid opening email attachments from unknown senders or even friends who do not normally send you attachments.
Use phishing and spam filters
Install a phishing filter for your email. This is the fastest way to report a cybercriminal and remove the message from your inbox.