Phishing Scams - Would You Know If You Have Been Hit?

Phishing Scams - Would You Know If You Have Been Hit?
This year, more and more people have been hit by phishing emails. One of the major companies that was attacked was Google, back in May this year, who were victims to a scam which claimed to come from Google Docs.
When Google users received an email, they were asked to click a link which risked giving the hackers access to their email accounts and everything it contained.
According to BBC News, Google said it had stopped the attack "within approximately one hour." Google said it affected "fewer than 0.1%" of Gmail users, but that does work out to about one million people overall.
Some users were aware it was spam message by the sender email address, which was suspiciously from a hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh@mailinator[.]com. Clearly this is a strange and unusual email address and proof of a scam, but others didn’t notice this and accepted the email as true and reputable. It also contained a URL link to click which is also a sure sign of a spam message, as the link can take you through to a spam account which poses as something more legitimate to make the user believe it is real. After being asked for log in credentials, the hackers have your details and can also email everyone in your contacts list so it could spread itself further. Scammers are active all over the internet, even they are present on buying and sellling apps like offerup in the form of offerup fake buyers.
This scam was more sophisticated than typical phishing attacks, which is a trend we are beginning to see. A typical phishing example was with Wonga ZA, who were targeted by hackers last year that were emailing and texting customers of the loan company claiming a great deal on a new loan rate and asking for an up-front fee. Wonga shut down the threat very quickly, responded responsibly and continue to be vigilant to any future threats. They also posted useful advice to its website saying “Remember, spam emails tend to be written in bad English and/or (1) come from private email addresses you don’t recognise, (2) from a sender you don’t know, (3) asking you for money and/or your personal information.”

Thousands of phishing emails are attempted each day – many get caught in the net. But some do make it through. When it is a big company, like Google, you don’t always expect it to be suspicious, but you should keep your guard up and be aware of the signs of phishing emails as well as the risks if you give out your personal information.
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This is a guest post from one of our readers, S. Davies. You too can submit your contents.
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