You shouldn’t assume that all of the emails in your inbox are legitimate. Statistics show that the average person receives over 100 emails per year. Hackers, unfortunately, use emails to trick recipients into revealing sensitive information. Known as phishing emails, they typically look like legitimate emails from reputable brands. Some of them may even contain official-looking logos. Interacting with a phishing email, however, could divulge your sensitive information to the hacker who sent it. Below are some tips on how to prevent falling from a phishing email.
Watch for Web Browser Warnings
If you use a web browser to check your inbox, you may notice a warning message when attempting to open a phishing email. All major web browsers have safeguards to protect their users from cyber threats, including phishing emails. Whether you use Chrome, Firefox or any other major web browser, it may display a warning notification when you try to open a phishing email. Don’t ignore these warnings.
Beware of Embedded Links
Many phishing emails contain one or more embedded links. Some of them may ask you to log in to your account, whereas other phishing emails may ask you to update your computer. Regardless, you should beware of embedded links. Clicking an embedded link in an email could take you to a nefarious website that’s used for phishing.
Use Anti-Phishing Software
There’s software available that’s designed specifically to protect against phishing schemes. Known as anti-phishing software, it can keep you safe from phishing schemes when checking your inbox. Anti-phishing software is available as standalone software, and it’s available as a browser add-on or extension. If you’re worried about phishing schemes, you should use anti-phishing software such as this when checking your inbox.
Don’t Respond With Sensitive Information
If you believe an email is part of a phishing attack, don’t respond to it with sensitive information. While some phishing emails use one or more embedded links to extract sensitive information from recipients, others rely on manual responses. A phishing email may ask you to verify your account information, for example. If you reply back to the phishing email with your account information, your account will become compromised.
Flag as Spam
One of the best things you can do to avoid falling for phishing emails is to flag them as spam. You don’t need to respond or otherwise interact with them. Upon identifying a phishing email in your inbox, click the spam button. By flagging it as spam, you shouldn’t receive additional emails from the same sender, and the flagged phishing email will be automatically moved to your spam folder.