Is it a scam? Is it real? Can you even spot the difference?
The act of phishing has become an extremely common practice for cyber criminals these days. It’s the number one way that hackers are able to gain confidential information about you. Today, you frequently hear people warning, “if you don’t know who it’s from don’t click or open it!” or “don’t open what I just sent you on Facebook, I was hacked.” These email scams are sneaky but are meant for hackers to get a hold of your sensitive information.
Here are the top 5 most common phishing emails:
- “We noticed multiple password attempts, please reset your password” You haven’t attempted to sign into your account, yet you’re receiving an email that you have and that you need to reset your password. They want you to follow these instructions and put in your personal information to change your password, in order to gain access to your account. Delete this email and don’t look back!
- “Update your billing information” You receive an email that looks like it’s coming from a well-known company, like Apple for example, requesting you to update your credit card information. Before you click on any link listed or provide any information, check the email address to be sure it’s legitimate.
- “We’re giving away $1,000! Click here to receive a reward!” Whatever you do, don’t do it! Nothing in life is free and you never receive a reward for just clicking. There’s always a catch. They will usually ask for bank details, but you will never see any money enter that bank account.
- “Someone set you a e-gift card” You must always double check with the sender if you receive an e-gift. Cybercriminals are really good at making things look legitimate. Make sure the emails match and your friend, family member, or colleague can confirm the e-gift.
- “Donate today!” This email will usually ask for money to help save a life, help someone who’s terminally ill, or help someone who is a victim of a disaster of some sort. Do not just click on links or attachments or donate without doing your research first. Either go to the official website of a charity you already know, to donate there, or make sure the email address of the sender is authentic.
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