There are 3 sure things in this world: death, taxes, and email scams. Evolving far past the Nigerian Prince scheme, “phishing” attacks are quickly becoming the biggest email security concern. Phishing refers to an email that fraudulently impersonates a reputable entity in order to steal information from you. Reports show over 3 billion fake emails are sent daily and it is estimated that phishing causes $17,700 of damage every minute.
Unfortunately, cybercriminals use current events to entice unsuspecting users to open their emails. The COVID-19 pandemic has become the latest playground for scammers. As a result, the FBI, Secret Service, WHO, CDC, DOJ, and FTC have all issued warnings. Here are things to look for to identify the latest phishing attacks:
- Links or attachments claiming to be from a source like the CDC or WHO - One of the best ways to combat phishing is to never follow links/attachments in an email unless you can verify with the sender that they sent the information. Always go to your browser and type in the website you’re looking for.
- Fake cures - If you get an email claiming to have the cure for the coronavirus and offering you a product or investment in their product, verify the information with the CDC website. If a cure really existed, it would be widespread public information!
- Stimulus check information - When reading emails from the IRS or government sources, go directly to their website to double-check the information. Don’t fall for scare tactics like “You will have to return your stimulus check if you don’t verify your social security number today.”
- Fraudulent “charities” - Make sure your benevolence is not misplaced! If you wish to donate toward COVID-19 relief, stick to known organizations and search for their website in your browser to ensure you are using the correct, secure giving platform.
Don’t let phishing affect your organization. Not only do you risk the potential for significant monetary loss, but other serious security vulnerabilities are also in play. Imagine the ramifications if one of your accounts is compromised and then used to spread further malicious content to your employees, community, or customers.
We offer several solutions to fight phishing attempts. By implementing Barracuda’s Total Email Protection we can stop the attack from ever reaching your inbox. Its Artificial Intelligence (AI) detects advanced phishing, spear-phishing, and account takeover attempts, taking basic spam filtering to the next level. We also have access to training software that teaches your employees how to recognize and respond to possible threats.
Contact us for a free consultation and analysis. We’d love to collaborate with you to make sure your business has comprehensive and complete security coverage.