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How to Identify Three Common Phishing Scams

What is a Phishing Scam, exactly? The name “phishing” originates from attackers’ use of fake emails and urls to “bait” victims into divulging personal information, typically via social engineering (a technique used by thieves to manipulate users into trusting them).

More and more phishing scammers are shifting their focus towards attacking users through their smartphones, since mobile applications have become ideal vectors for attack.

So how do you discern a real email versus a phishing scam? It’s easier than you may think. An unsuspecting user just downloads forged applications loaded with malware, and crooks then actively capture personal information and trick users into divulging passwords.

Take the recent W-2 attacks that are prevalent during tax season, or the phishing scam affecting Gmail users. This style of cyberattack has been around since the dawn of the internet, with the earliest instance of phishing attacks dating back to the dial-up days of AOL.

But beware, because it’s not only emails—today’s phishing attacks can come from multiple directions, including smartphone apps and phone calls.

With your data at stake, it’s important to know what other kinds of common phishing scams to keep an eye out for. Here are the three main ones to have on your radar:

Cloud storage phishing: Cloud service providers such as Amazon, Google, and Dropbox have recently become the target of phishing scammers. And since so many of us trust the cloud with our personal data, make sure you stay vigilant when an unknown attachment comes through.

Mobile Phishing:  More and more phishing scammers are shifting their focus towards attacking users through their smartphones, since mobile applications have become ideal vectors for attack. So, make sure you protect yourself by always reading app reviews before downloads, keep security settings high, and consider adopting a reliable, security solution, like STM IT Solutions.

Email Phishing: Email phishing attacks are a cybercriminal’s bread and butter. Additionally, stay up to date on cybersecurity news to keep in the loop on the newest kind of phishing emails coming to inboxes.

The bottom line is to protect your information and always reading app reviews before downloads, keep security settings kicked into high gear, consider adopting a reliable, mobile security solution immediately, and of course, have a back-up plan.

STM IT Solutions can help you protect your crucial business data from loss due to a natural disaster, system failure, or human error. We offer personalized data protection solutions to secure your critical data and IT infrastructure. We back up your data at our Primary Data Center, and replicate it.  We send your data to a 2nd STM Data Center in order to assure that your data is always available. In some circumstances, we can replicate your data at your own facility to give you yet another level of comfort and security.

Interested in learning more about the services STM IT Solutions offers? Call (704) 334-7893 for a complimentary IT consultation, and allow us to customize a solution for your business.

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