Phishing scams are by no means new, but over the last couple of months, there has been an increase in this type of malicious activity. It is important for you and your workforce to be aware of the signs and steps that you should take if you feel you are falling victim to this type of scam.
Always remember to SCAN when you receive emails that you feel are phishing scams. Here are our 4 SCAN steps to protect yourself against phishing email attempts.
The first and simplest action to take when you are suspicious of an email is to stop what you are doing. Don’t open any links or attachments that may be in the email.
Phishing scammers love to play on your emotions by making you worried or scared. They try to create a sense of urgency, forcing you to react immediately. They will say things like “WARNING” or “ERROR” and usually threaten some service shutdown or loss of data/finances.
This is where you need to calm down. The five extra minutes you put into reading the email properly will make a difference.
Now to see if the email is actually a scam. Often times these emails can look authentic but there are usually signs that will give them away. These include bad grammar or language, requests for personal information, suspicious attachments, and wording designed to make you panic.
You can also look at the email address. If it looks fake, it probably is.
If you’re not sure, contact the right people to assist you. This could be your direct management or your IT support team. They will be equipped with the right knowledge and procedures to deal with the attack.
They will advise you on your next steps, as well as block emails from the sender going forward.
Remember to SCAN suspicious emails and you will be less likely to fall victim to phishing attempts. Here is an infographic that can be printed and put up at the office to remind employees what to look out for as well.
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