Phishing scams, where fraudsters trick users into providing them with sensitive information, are one of the most common online threats. Here, six ways you can avoid becoming a victim.
You’re scanning through your inbox and see an authentic-looking email from your bank — right down to the logo. It says they’re verifying your online banking information, and so they ask you to click on a link and type in your credentials.
Sounds legitimate, no?
Unfortunately, this is a case of a “phishing” scam, a malicious attempt by a person (or program) to “lure” you into giving out personal info, such as banking info, a credit card number, or social security number — with the intent to steal your identity for financial gain.
Here are some suggestions to avoid being taken by these scams.
1. If you get an email, text message, or pop-up message that asks for personal or financial information, don’t reply and don’t click on the link in the email. Your bank, financial institution or credible online payment service (such as PayPal) will never ask for sensitive information via email. When in doubt, call your bank or credit card company.
2. Anti-malware software (which includes virus detection), a computer firewall and web browser with an anti-phishing feature can all help act as an extra line of defense from some of these malicious phishers.