Understanding Phishing: Answering Your Common Questions

The chances are you have either heard the word phishing before or know what it means. Whether this be from watching the news, talking to a friend or from a first-hand experience. However, the topic itself is confusing and tricky for some people to understand. Therefore, Three Cherries as a trusted IT support Bristol provider have broken down some of the common questions and misconceptions surrounding phishing.

 

What is Phishing?

Firstly, it is important to understand what phishing means. Pronounced the same way as fishing, phishing is the art of sending fraudulent emails, pretending to either be a trusted person or company. Examples people see often in their junk inbox are phishing PayPal emails or people pretending to be Microsoft. They rely on you believing that the email is from a trusted source and not checking finer details such as spellings, grammar or the email address.

A user checking their emails which could potentially be a phishing email

How Phishing Works:

As mentioned above, phishing solely relies on creating a false sense of trust and user error. Although these emails may seem authentic, there will usually be little give aways that they aren’t. These are usually found in the spellings, email address name or simply being too good to be true. Phishing emails also typically include a link which they want you to click. This then usually asks for your login details on a fake page and by filling this in and submitting, you’re giving access of your account to the malicious users.

 

Who Does Phishing Attack:

Who phishing attacks is a broad question due to the scale and nature of the crime as anyone with an email address is a possible target. However, data has shown that those aged 25-44 are actually most at risk. This may be down to being of working age and the potential information gained from these users being more valuable. It is important that everyone understands that they could be a potential target regardless of job function, age, or location.

 

What Can be Done to Prevent Phishing?

Unfortunately, most successful attacks are down to user error and by someone believing the email and clicking the link. It is therefore a step in the right direction by ensuring your staff are trained to identify any malicious emails. It is also worth reporting any suspicious emails to your mail provider be this Outlook, Gmail, or iCloud. There is usually a report button on the page which allows you to flag it as spam and may prevent you receiving similar emails again.

 

Are Phishing Simulations Effective?

Yes! There are multiple ways to use simulations as a tool to identify weaknesses in the business. The first being using phishing simulations to begin with to identify any users who fall for these fake phishing emails. The users which do could then be trained and retested. Another method is to train all staff with a security awareness course and then send a phishing simulation out. Anyone that then fails this could receive extra support regarding cyber security and identifying fraudulent emails. At Three Cherries, our trusted partner provides high quality security awareness training and simulations. If you would like more information on this, contact us on our details below or on the form at the top of our website.

A small business in their office

Three Cherries: Protecting your Users from Phishing Attacks

At Three Cherries, we understand that with new cyber threats popping up regularly, the internet can be a confusing place. If your business is worried about these threats, reach out today and our team of experts will guide you through the processes and requirements for security awareness training or email simulations. At Three Cherries, we take the gamble out of business technology.

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