Finding Phishing Attempts in Email and SMS.


If you want to make sure an email you received has safe links and is from a known source? 

Here are some measures for staying safe:

  • Check the email’s From address. Think twice before clicking any links in an email if you don’t recaognize the sender or the address.

  • Find a common greeting. Typically, you wouldn’t start a business email with a salutation like “Hi Dear.” An email from a friend won’t often misspell your name or use an honorific like “Mr., Mrs., or Miss.”

  • Check the link URLs. Before clicking on a link, hover your mouse over it. Your browser will display each one’s web URL. Don’t click on a link if it seems suspect (for example, a link from Netflix that sends you to a completely other domain). Move on after deleting or reporting the email as spam. 

  • Be wary of any emails that invite you to click on a link, whether to update your payment details, update your account information, receive a coupon for free stuff, or examine an invoice you aren’t expecting.

How to Prevent Phishing Email Attempts

Boost your online security by adding additional levels of protection to lessen the harm that scammers might cause:

  • Put security software to use. The top security and antivirus programs include built-in phishing defense. To protect you from phishing attempts, configure the software to update automatically and run in the background.

  • Whenever possible, use multi-factor authentication online. If you set up multi-factor authentication to require something you have (like a hardware security key or an authenticator app passcode) or something you are (like a scan of your fingerprint, retina, or face), it will be more difficult for hackers to access your accounts even if they manage to obtain your username and password.

  • Make a data backup. Regularly make copies of your vital papers and data, and save them on an external drive or with an online backup or storage service.