Phishing: How to Protect Yourself from Fraudulent Messages

person using two computers for phishing

What is Phishing?
The Australian Cyber Security Centre defines Phishing as “a way that cybercriminals steal confidential information, such as online banking logins, credit card details, business login credentials or passwords/passphrases, by sending fraudulent messages (sometimes called ‘lures’)”.

Usually, they do this by sending fraudulent messages pretending to be from a large organisation you trust. The scam is made more believable by being sent via email, SMS, instant messaging or social media platforms. The messages often contain a link to a fake website where you are encouraged to enter your confidential details.

How to protect your business from phishing attacks
You may have heard of phishing before, but do you know how to protect yourself from becoming a victim?

  • If a message seems suspicious, contact the person or business separately to check if they are likely to have sent the message. 
  • Use contact details you find through a legitimate source and not those contained in the suspicious message. Ask them to describe what the attachment or link is.
  • Be wary of unsolicited emails, even if they appear to be from a company or organisation you know. If you’re not expecting an email from them, don’t open it.
  • Don’t click on any links in suspicious emails. If you hover your mouse over the link, you should be able to see the website address it will take you to. If this looks suspicious, don’t click on it.
  • Be cautious of any email that asks you to confirm your personal or financial details. Legitimate companies will never ask for your password or bank account information via email.
  • Keep your software and antivirus up to date. This will help to protect your computer from phishing attacks and other types of malware.

If you think you may have fallen victim to a phishing attack, report it to your bank or service provider immediately. You should also change your passwords for any accounts that may have been affected.

By following these simple tips, you can help to protect yourself from phishing attacks and other types of cybercrime. 

Still have questions? Contact our team of experts to learn more about protecting your business from phishing attacks.

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