Social engineering is the art of manipulating people so they release confidential information. Cyber criminals often use this tactic, which plays on human emotions, to trick you into giving them your passwords, financial information or access to your computer to secretly install malicious software.
Phishing is one of the most common scams used by cyber criminals. They send you a phony email offer (telling you that you’ve won a vacation or a lottery, for example) hoping that you’ll take the bait and give them the information they’re seeking, usually your private information or your financial data.
Here’s how it works:
What you should do
Criminals will use any means at their disposal to try to get access to your information, not only email. Phishing scams can also come in the form of text messages to your mobile phone or tablet, or as messages through social media sites, or even telephone calls.
They will also tailor their phishing attacks to target a specific individual, based on information they may have already gained (like through social media). This practice is known as Spear Phishing, and could resemble an email coming from a friend you have on social media, recommending you check out a store that caters to the hobby interest you and that friend share. The link to the store would contain malicious software.
Have you have ever received an email or text message from a seemingly familiar source asking you to update your profile or change your password due to some unforeseen circumstance?
To spoof a website or an email address means faking the identity of another user or company to make it look like it’s from a legitimate source or a known sender.
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