What types of phishing attacks should you watch out for?
- Email phishing
- Domain spoofing
- Voice phishing
- Search engine phishing
- Evil twin
The internet has undoubtedly transformed the way people communicate with each other. However, there are some groups with malicious intentions on abusing this technology. Through different types of phishing attacks, they have been able to steal personal information from private individuals and organizations they use for financial gain.
What is a phishing attack?
Simply put, phishing attacks have been designed to deceive unsuspecting individuals by stealing user data, login details, or even bank account numbers. Individuals often don’t notice these attacks because they are convincingly coming from legitimate websites, organizations, companies, and the like. Knowing what to look out for can easily help you protect yourself and your associations from these phishing attacks.
Email phishing is probably one of the most common and oldest forms of phishing attacks.
Generally, email phishing attacks appear in the form of emails whose addresses and senders seem to be coming from legitimate sources. Scammers of this kind of phishing attack will ask the victim to supplant sensitive information such as name, employee ID, and banking information, among others.
There are many ways to identify whether the email is a scam. If the email is not addressed to the recipient, for example, this is already a good indication. The email would use generic terms to refer to the would-be-victim. These may come in the form of “Dear Customer” or its derivatives. Since these emails aren’t generated professionally, you may want to look for grammatical errors in the content.
The best way you can arm yourself against this kind of attack is to visit the actual website which the sender is referring to. Do not click on the link they’ve added to the email, but instead contact the organization they are falsely representing.
Similar to email phishing, domain spoofing involves someone who is pretending to belong to a particular organization by using the latter’s domain. They do this by impersonating them or pretending to be a company representative.
Tell-tale signs of domain spoofing include websites that contain fonts and other webpage placements that have been slightly modified. Domain spoofing aims to once again trick the victim into inputting financial data.
You can identify a fake domain by once again, visiting the actual website, seeing it for yourself, and making a comparison. Or you could simply opt not to click on the link provided for you by email. In extreme cases, if the attacker has solely targeted the network you’re on, it’s always a safe bet to arm yourself with effective cybersecurity solutions.
Also known as phone scams, voice phishing aims to trick a person into making a financial deposit by once again impersonating someone who seems to be from a legitimate organization.
An attacker would normally ask you to make a purchase for a warranty or tell you that you’ve made a delayed payment in your insurance or credit card fees. This kind of attack may lead to situations where someone would come knocking on your door and will lead you to banks – effectively tricking you into making a financial transaction.
Voice phishers are highly persuasive, so you can watch out for the tone of their voice. They’re also persistent and will use language that aims to make you redirect your attention towards them. They might also resort to threats and other harmful languages.
Search engine phishing
Unlike the first two kinds of phishing attacks, search engine phishing doesn’t involve emails. These attacks are slightly more advanced, as attackers can generate their own websites containing eye-popping visuals of ludicrous product offers and other deals. These sites seem legitimate because they usually pop up on the first page of normal search results in Google, for example.
Since these accounts are fake, you’d never be able to receive the product or give away because they don’t exist. The attackers have only the aim of stealing your personal information for their financial benefit. Spotting these sites can be easy enough as long as you make it a habit of double-checking them. You should always make sure you’re not inputting your personal data, insurance numbers, and the like.
An evil twin attack may seem harder to spot in the beginning. This attack usually starts out with an attacker setting up a spurious WiFi access point, which victims would connect to.
Again, sensitive information and other login credentials were compromised in this kind of attack. The user would be unaware that the attacker is already carrying out their attack right under the person’s nose.
The best way to protect yourself against these attacks is to avoid logging into any accounts on public WiFi connections. Your browser would also be able to indicate if the login page you’ve been redirected to is an unsecured connection. It’s also important that you utilize two-factor authentication for your bank accounts to make it difficult for the attacker to target them.
The most effective piece of advice to prevent yourself from falling victim to the different types of phishing attacks is not to input any sensitive and personal information on any kind of online avenues. Unless otherwise authorized and verified by you, you should by no means be doing this activity.
Alternatively, you can protect your network with effective cybersecurity solutions from Direc Business that will help in comprehensively scanning your network for potential threats. With their FortiGate NGFW, you’ll be able to secure your network through intrusion prevention systems and web filtering, as well as secure socket layer inspection. Manage your risks better with this advanced firewall security.