Cyber-crime, cyber-safety, cyber-security, what does it all mean?
With so much information out there about all things cyber, it can be a little confusing.
Here on Cyberspace, we explain what it all means, how it can impact you, and what you can do to keep your family safe.
We've also put together a handy guide full of the latest scams, what to look for, how to avoid them and what we’ll do to prove it’s us.
Criminals will use any situation to scam people, even a pandemic! Knowing how to spot a phishing attempt can help keep you and your information safe
What's a phishing attack?
When cyber criminals try to trick people by sending fake emails or messages that seem authentic, it's known as phishing.
The fake message often comes from a familiar source, like a business or colleague. They might ask you to confirm personal account information, such as a password, or prompt you to click a link or open an attachment that infects your computer with a virus or malware - malicious software designed to harm your device or steal data.
Phishing can be hard to spot
Some scammers tap into human emotions to play on our fears or take advantage of our anxiety.
Studies suggest scammers most often play on emotions such as longing, curiosity, urgency and fear. The most common attacks reported during the outbreak of COVID-19 were emails promising victims financial support, together with fraudulent, urgent requests for money or personal information.
What should I look out for?
Pay attention to anything that asks for your personal details, including seemingly innocent quizzes on social media.
These quizzes are often designed to collect and share personal information, which can be used to answer security questions that allow access to your accounts – things like ‘first job, mother’s maiden name, favourite colour,’ etc.
Don’t share any personal information that could potentially be used to access your accounts. Always stop and ask yourself what someone could do with your data, no matter how simple.
Check out our top tips to avoid phishing scams...
remember the message could look like it's from someone you know
- Beware of requests for personal information
- If the message is from a friend or family member, stop and ask yourself ‘is it definitely them?’ (i.e. is it genuine or does it sound generic)
- If you're not sure, reach out to them using another form of communication to ask about the message
- Check email domains and whether they’re 100% accurate by comparing with emails/previous communications from the company/institution
- Don't be hasty - ignore messages insisting on urgent action - only criminals will try to rush or panic you
- Check spelling and grammar
- Check the validity of the URL. If you hover over the link without clicking on it, you can see the full destination address appear. If the URL doesn’t match the display address, or looks suspicious, it may be a phishing email
- Avoid downloading attachments from unexpected emails. Even if you think an attachment is genuine, it’s good practice to always scan it first using antivirus software
Here to help you and your family stay cyber-safe