Phishing is when fraudsters attempt to get access to sensitive information from a business or individual. They can be looking for passwords, bank accounts, or other protected information. To prevent falling victim to phishing scams, be on the lookout for the following:

• Emails from companies or individuals you would normally trust, but whose email address does not match the one you know. Check the domain (the part after the @ symbol) to make sure it is valid. Often, the domain will be misspelled or a long string of characters.

• Emails regarding suspicious activity or log-in attempts on your account. These will usually have a link for you to “review” the activity, which takes you to a fake login page – which will give a fraudster your email and password.

• Emails asking you to login to fix payment information or other account info. Similar to above, these lead to fake login pages designed to skim credentials.

• Emails with fake invoices or links to make a payment for a product/service you didn’t purchase. These may appear similarly to invoices you are expecting, so be sure to double-check. Fraudsters can get ACH or other bank account info from these.

• Emails with offers to refunds or other “freebies” that require you to provide login info or other sensitive information.

• Emails with poor English grammar and spelling. Fraudsters are often operating in foreign countries and don’t speak English fluently.

• Emails with any attachment or links to documents you aren’t expecting. These will often lead to fake Microsoft login pages for “OneDrive” or “SharePoint”. In the case of links, you can hover your mouse over a link to see where it actually leads. If it doesn’t look legitimate, it probably isn’t.

It’s always better to be over-cautious than under. If you receive an email that you’re not sure about, it’s best to contact your IT help desk for review. It takes much less time to review a suspicious email than to secure a compromised account, and better safe than sorry.

Here at Layered Systems, we take phishing and other security concerns very seriously. We implement the latest security solutions to ensure companies and their employees stay secure. For more information about how we can help secure your business today, Contact Us.