On September 28, NetSPI’s Patrick Sayler was featured in the Lifewire article called Phishing Is More Common (and More Dangerous) Than Ever—Here’s How to Stay Safe. Read the preview below or view it online.
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New figures show that fraudsters are increasingly using phishing and similar methods when gaining access to user information and accounts, but there are a number of ways people can help protect themselves.
Data collected by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) in England and Wales show that instances of computer misuse and fraud have increased in recent years, particularly since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and recent cost of living increases. But while bad actors are beginning to turn to phishing as one of their main methods of committing fraud, experts say that doesn’t mean people can’t take steps to minimize the chances of falling for those attempts.
“Overall, individuals need to make security part of the fabric of their everyday routines, Jamie Moles, Senior Technical Marketing Manager at security firm ExtraHop, told Lifewire via email. “Everyone holds a level of responsibility in combating phishing attacks, and positive reinforcement, continuous education, and solid feedback loops are all key to making it stick.”
Experts like Moles believe that people can help reduce the chances of becoming a victim of phishing by taking more care when scrutinizing email messages that they receive. “Check the sender’s email address,” he said, noting that “this is often an easy red flag that users miss when they’re in a hurry, or it looks like the note came from their boss or CEO.” Phishing attempts are often made to look like they came from an authority figure, making potential victims less likely to question a request for information, for example.
Any call initiated by a third party should initially be treated as suspicious because they might not be who they say they are. “Situations involving [calls and messages] can be independently verified through the relevant company’s web page,” Patrick Sayler, principal security consultant at NetSPI, told Lifewire via email. If in doubt, call them back on a number known to be legitimate and not necessarily the one they called you from.
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