Web pages and e-mails that are masqueraded as a trustworthy entity, or phishing attacks, have gained significant popularity in the past few years as hackers develop more advanced ways to trick people.
For example, security firm McAfee warned consumers that hackers are likely to take advantage of the launch of ObamaCare earlier this month with phishing attacks aimed at stealing personal and sensitive information.
Another example of an attack was earlier this month, where employees at Saint Louis University in St Louis, Missouri, USA fell victim to a phishing e-mail. The employees provided account information, which the attackers then used to gain unauthorized access to direct deposit information for staffers and personal health information for patients treated at the university's hospital.
Here are a few ways to avoid phishing attacks:
· Download the most up-to-date version of your Internet browser as it includes the latest security measures
· Triple check the domain name of a website to ensure it’s legitimate. “https:” in the URL can confirm that its real
· Ignore e-mails that call users to provide sensitive information by claiming “your account will be terminated.”
· Be extra careful about downloading software and e-mail attachments from the Internet like free screen savers and emoticons. These programs usually contain spyware or screen scrapers that steal personal information.
Readers, have you ever fell victim to a phishing attack? Please share in the comments below.
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