Both fishing and it’s phonic twin phishing, are acts in which the goal is to catch prey. Unfortunately, in the latter case, we are all targets as internet users.
Phishing falls into the category of online minefields such as E-mail scams and viruses. The best defence is awareness. With that in mind, my girlfriend having never heard the term before, may very well be a sitting duck.
What do they look like?
Your typical phishing attempt involves an email being sent, supposedly from a company or group that the recipient is familiar with. The goal of the email is for the viewer to disclose personal details. Phishing attempts can range from emails full of spelling mistakes and clearly suspect source email addresses, to very authentic looking emails – some even include convincing signatures – that link to an authentic looking website. The likes of which can and do catch people out.
The most common variety of phishing email looks as though it comes from a particular company, and a scare tactic of sorts may be used for example: “For security reasons, you are required to prove your account validity by clicking the following link and logging in. Failure to do so within one week of viewing this email will result in the suspension of your account.”
Now most people will see an email like that and instantly delete it, however some people will follow the instructions and unwillingly disclose login details and/or credit card details.
Phishing attempts are a nuisance such as spam, with costly repercussions if fallen for. An increase in this type of activity has been noticed in the past few months by us. Emails have been received by our customers that claim to be from iiNet or Westnet and ask for login details or requesting a web link to be followed.
What should I do?
As awareness is key, here are some pointers to keep in mind:
If you are too late in discovering something is a little “phishy” and have already disclosed personal details:
We can turn the tables on these “phishers” by raising awareness. If you discover any phishing attempts please forward them (as an attachment) on to firstname.lastname@example.org. And remember, you can always contact us on 13 22 58 with any concerns. Let’s work together to prevent our friends and family from being targets.