How can you identify phishing and protect your business?

Think Phishing emails are a thing of the past? Think again! These malicious scams are still alive and well, disguising themselves as messages from ordinarily trustworthy sources and stealing private, valuable information right from your inbox.

Here’s an example: you receive an email from Amazon. It appears to be legitimate; the official logo appears on the upper left corner, and you recognize the brand’s template as being similar to ones you have received in the past. Next, you read a warning: your account has been “inactive” for more than a month, and the company is now requesting an “integrity check”. This includes entering your shipping address, billing address, and an up-to-date credit card.

But this is a bogus demand! Companies such as Amazon never request unsolicited billing information, and even similar organizations (such as Wells Fargo or Microsoft) abide by much stricter security standards. Other illegitimate emails may include confirmations for package deliveries, inquiries for password changes, notifications of changes in company policy, notes from the IT department in your office, or even offers for free vacations!

Don’t fall for these maleware shakedowns. To prevent this information theft, be sure to keep reliable and up-to-date firewalls for both your hardware and software. Also, pay for a current anti-virus program (the free ones just won’t cut it). Last and most importantly, back up your important data- and be careful what you click on!