Phishing is a tactic used by cybercriminals that involves using deceptive emails to gather personal data. For example, the cyber criminal might send a fake message pretending to be your bank or an email that appears to have come from one of your colleagues.
The victim is encouraged to provide their personal details, make a payment, or click a malicious attachment. Cyberattackers use phishing to pretend to be someone you trust, and then attempt to steal your personal data.
The Impact of Phishing Attacks
According to CSO Online, “phishing attacks account for more than 80% of reported security incidents,” and “$17,700 is lost every minute due to phishing attacks.”
Security Magazine conducted a survey to examine the prevalence of phishing attacks during 2020. In discussion of their data, they reported that “cybersecurity threats are on the rise—more than half (53%) of those surveyed said that they had witnessed an increase in phishing activity since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Businesses who fall victim to phishing attacks will suffer financial losses, reputational losses, and lose sensitive data. To protect your business from a phishing attack, you need to know how to spot one.
How to Spot a Phishing Attack
1. Examine the email address
When a hacker creates a fake email, they will select the display name so that it appears as though a trusted company is contacting you. The fake email will usually contain a bogus company logo, and so many people end up getting fooled this way.
The cybercriminal will add the spoofed company’s name as part of the email address, but they won’t be able to mimic the real email address entirely. If you’re suspicious, go to the legitimate company website, and check the email address for yourself.
2 . Check the domain name
When you receive an email that looks suspicious, check the domain name. Most organizations have business accounts with a custom email domain. If the name is attached to a public domain, you can be certain that this is a phishing attempt.
3. Look out for spelling and writing style
Another key indicator of a phishing email is a poor writing style and bad grammar. It’s not commonplace for big organizations to make such mistakes in their email campaigns, but it is common for cybercriminals. If the email stands out as being poorly written, it’s unlikely that it’s come from a legitimate organization.
How to Protect Your Business from Phishing Threats
There are many ways that you can protect your business from phishing threats including:
Cybersecurity training: To protect your business from cybersecurity attacks, it’s a good idea to provide your staff with advanced cybersecurity training.
Modernize your IT infrastructure: When it comes to cybersecurity, older systems are more vulnerable to cyberattacks. phishing is email-based, but it’s still worth hiring an IT company to update your IT infrastructures. With the latest tech, software, and security processes, you’ll keep your business safe online.
Link Checking Tools: Sometimes phishing emails include suspicious links, if you need to check a link without clicking on it you can try link checking tools like CheckShortURL. The tool can reveal the real destination of the link.