Cyber Crime: Don’t Get Hooked by Phishing Schemes

Watch out for these signs of a phishing scam.

A phishing scam is a criminal’s attempt to gain someone’s personal information by pretending to be someone else.  Usually, criminals attempt to emulate representatives of a legitimate organization (such as your bank) or another trusted industry contact.  While some calls and emails are obviously fake, criminals are getting more conniving every day.  To ensure that you do not fall into a cyber criminal’s trap, watch out for these signs of a phishing scam.

  • Unfamiliar Companies

If you get a call or email from an unknown business where they offer you free prizes, products, or services, then it is a scam.  Oftentimes, the caller or sender will ask you to provide personal information, such as your credit card number, in order to receive the offer.  Some may try to pressure you into making quick decisions with the threat that you will lose the “great offer.” Naturally, you should not give these callers or senders any information and instead block their number or report the email as spam.

  • Misspelled Words

You can often identify phishing emails because the sender uses informal language or misspells words.  For instance, if you get an email that’s seemingly from your bank, skim through it before taking any action.  If you notice that the sender misspells your name or other words or makes glaring grammatical errors, then this is a clear indication that it’s a scam.  Quickly scanning through an email is generally enough to ascertain its legitimacy.

  • Threatening Tone

Finally, if you receive a call or email that takes on a hyper-threatening tone, then it is likely a scam.  For instance, one popular tactic is claiming that one of your online accounts has been compromised.  The caller or email sender will urge you to verify your login credentials, claiming that failure to act immediately will result in the deletion of your account.  Should this happen to you, consider whether the caller or sender is asking you to take actions that are reasonable given the situation.  If you have doubts, always call the company to verify the legitimacy of the call or email.  You should never provide personal information over the phone or through email unless you are completely sure that the situation is safe.

Watch out for these signs of a phishing scam.  Want another way to protect your business from cyber criminals? Then make sure you have the right business insurance protections in place.  For assistance with all your commercial coverage needs, contact the experts at The Reardon Agency today.

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