The most common avenue for attacks by threat actors is phishing. For that reason, your company and employees must be on the lookout for phishing emails. If you are not sure what to watch out for, this article highlights some of the most common signs of a phishing email to keep you on high alert.
Language is always an important aspect of communication. If you feel the language and tone in the email are not what you have always been accustomed to, you’ll need to be on high alert because you could just be reading a phishing email. At that moment, find ways to safeguard your technology and data and do not give information that could expose your company to external cyber-attacks.
Sense of Urgency
Always treat with suspicion any emails threatening negative consequences. Additionally, emails that imply a sense of urgency or require you to act immediately should be treated with lots of suspicions. Most hackers want you to act hastily so you don’t get to scrutinize their message.
If the attachments in your email are associated with extensions that are usually linked to malware, do not download them, especially if the source is unknown.
If you get an email with a suspicious request, like one asking you for something which is out of the norm, then treat that with a lot of caution. For instance, an unlikely source requesting you to install software into your computer could be a clue that the email is phishing.
Short and Sweet
Phishing emails can be sparse in information so you do not get suspicious of them. If you get a particularly short and enticing email, you need to double-check and see if the source is trustworthy.
Incorrect use of grammar and bad spelling is one of the most common indicators of a phishing email. Professional sources often create emails free of grammar and spelling errors because these companies have autocorrect features for outbound emails.
If you receive an email claiming you won a prize for something you did not participate in, then it’s most likely a phishing email. Do not engage with emails you did not initiate conversation, especially those claiming you have worn a prize.
Request for Details
Fake landing pages that request your details are often avenues for cyber-attack. Be on the lookout for landing pages that request your credentials or other personal details.
Discrepancies in Email
If there are inconsistencies in information, addresses, and links from the email you received, then something could be wrong. For that reason, it is worth confirming against previous correspondence that the information in the email matches to avoid attacks.
The most effective way to deal with phishing emails is to report and alert others about emails you suspect to be phishing. That way, everyone else in the organization can be extra cautious when they come across similar emails.
These are by no means the only telltale signs of phishing emails. In some cases, you may be required to use your judgment to determine if the email you receive is phishing.
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