22 February 2010

What are phishing emails?

Although I consider myself to be quite Internet savvy, I still receive emails from time to time that throw me a little. You always hear people warning about phishing emails and saying not to reveal too much about yourself online. But do you know what a phishing email is and how to spot one?

Phishing emails
Phishing emails are emails that pretend to be from a genuine company or organisation and attempt to trick recipients into disclosing their bank account details. Often these emails look very realistic and contain the logo and colour schemes of the company they claim to be from.

As a rule, never tell anyone your bank account details by email.

Some phishing emails will ask you to follow a link and confirm your internet banking login details – never do this. These links might be taking you to a fake website, made to look identical to the site you normally go to for Internet banking. Always type in the regular URL you use to login to your internet banking into the address bar of a new browser window as opposed to following links you receive by email.

Some people that I’ve spoken to who have been victims of phishing scams have said that as well as feeling angry and worried, they felt a little embarrassed to have fallen victim to a scam in the first place. If you think you have been the victim of a scam, don’t be embarrassed – it is not your fault.

Those that run scams are despicable and need to be caught. If you know of anyone involved in criminal activity, including scams, you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously through the online form on the charity’s website. If you are worried you might have been a victim of a phishing scam or you want to know more about them, visit the Bank Safe Online website.

No comments:

Post a Comment