Your Basic Guide To Email Phishing, and How To Stay Safe

Basic Guide To Email Phishing

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It’s the season of Christmas. The season of deals!

Christmas is undoubtedly the most popular time of the year for shopping deals. If you are a savvy shopper, it is extremely likely that you have been keeping an eye out for the deal prompts from your favorite retailers. Maybe hoping for some good deals on gifts you need to buy.

But there is a particular type of scam that is really common around this time of the year, one that you need to be aware of and safeguard against. It is email phishing.

What is Email Phishing

Phishing emails are scam emails which look like they are from reputable retailers, but in fact, are designed to get you to click on their link.

These emails are designed to get you to click on their link, their website, give them information, etc.

Just one click can then give them back-door access to all sorts of information. Worse is if you use their link to buy anything, as you then enter your payment details – and basically serve up your card information to scammers on a platter.

Scamsters have been getting really smart about these emails. The emails often are really personalized, even having your name in the subject line!

They are crafty, but there are things you can do to stay safe.

Do not click on untrusted links.

How to stay safe against email phishing scams

Here are a few things you can do to stay safe:

  • Have antivirus installed on your computer, and phone.
  • If an email seems suspicious, do not open it. If you use Gmail, mark it as spam.
  • Look at the “from” address – that usually will give you insight into whether the email really is from the retailer it claims to be from.
  • Even if you open a suspect email, do not click any link inside the email.
  • Double check any offer you get on the retailer’s site – visit their website and look for the deal on there. If you can’t find it on there, then it is a scam. Remember, if something seems too good to be true, it probably is.

Especially during this festive season, you need to keep an eye out for such emails.
After all, you don’t need a scam impacting your Christmas festivities.

Here’s a rule of thumb for you to keep in mind: if you did not subscribe to a retailer’s emails, do not open any email that claims to be from them. At best it is spam, at worst it is a phishing email.

If something seems too good to be true, it probably is.

What To Do About Phishing Emails

Ok, so you know what steps you can take to keep yourself safe. But what about doing something about these malicious emails – is there anything that you can actually do?

Actually, there are a few things you can do. 

  • Mark it as spam – nearly every email account provider has an option for you to mark spam emails
  • Report it to Action Fraud 
  • Report it to Google
  • Report it to APWG (Anti-Phishing Working Group)

Last words

Common sense goes a long way in keeping yourself safe against email phishing. You can grab yourself great deals without falling for these scams.

Stay smart.

And all the best with bagging yourself some great Christmas deals!

You can learn more about email phishing on www.phishing.org/

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