Phishing is a threat to virtually every business worldwide. Proofpoint’s 2022 State of the Phish Report shows that 83% of respondents fell prey to phishing attacks last year.
It is frustrating that while most people are familiar with phishing and its principles, many get swindled. Scammers use a variety of tricks to trick people into clicking on malicious links and giving out their personal information.
They also employ the same tactics over and over again. Although each phishing campaign may look different, with the pretext being about one organization and attackers finding new ways around security filters, their phishing techniques are rarely changed.
5 Common Types of Phishing Attacks
These minor adjustments are often enough to get us out of our seats. Each new campaign is convincing enough to fool overworked employees with its timeless strategies and carefully planned social engineering tactics.
This blog will help you spot fraudsters’ tricks. We’ll look at five common phishing scams you might encounter.
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#1. Phishing by eMail
Email is the most common method of sending phishing emails. The scammer will create a fake domain to pretend it is a legitimate organization. This fake domain can then send thousands of generic requests.
A fake domain can often substitute characters, such as putting ‘r’ or ‘n’ next to each other to make ‘rn’ rather than. Fraudsters may also create a unique domain with the legitimate organization’s name.
A recipient may see the word “Amazon” in the sender’s address and assume it is genuine mail. Although there are many ways to identify phishing emails, it is important to verify the email address.
If your work or business is related to emails, it should be good to use email scanning services to protect yourself from email phishing.
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#2. Phishing is a Serious Problem
Two other types of email phishing are also possible. The spear phishing type refers to malicious emails that are sent to a particular person.
This is a crime that criminals will do if they have any or all the following information about their victim:
- Their name.
- Place of employment
- Position title
- Email address
- Particular information about the job position.
The fraudster can address the person by name and knows that their job involves making bank transfers for the company.
This email’s informality suggests that the sender speaks English fluently and gives the impression that it is a genuine message rather than a template.
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#3. Whale watching
Senior administrators are the targets of whaling attacks, which are more targeted. Whaling attacks are similar to phishing attacks, but the techniques used tend to be subtler.
As criminals attempt to imitate senior staff, they use tricks such as malicious URLs and fake links. Many whaling emails use the excuse of a busy CEO asking an employee to do him a favor.
Although emails like the one above are not as sophisticated as spearphishing emails, they play on employees’ willingness and ability to follow orders from their bosses. The sender might be suspect, but recipients may not like encountering them.
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#4. Vishing and smishing
Telephones are replacing email as the preferred method of communication in smishing or vishing. Vishing is a form of communication that involves criminals using text messages to communicate with their victims.
The most common pretext for smishing is messages from your bank warning you about suspicious activity. It suggests you are the victim of fraud and directs you to follow the link to avoid further damage.
The link takes the recipient to a fraudulent website that steals your banking information.
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#5. Angler phishing
Social media is a moderately new method for criminals and others to manipulate people.
Fake URLs, cloned posts and tweets, and instant messaging, basically the same thing as smishing, can all be used by criminals to convince people to share sensitive information or download malware.
Criminals could also use the data people post on social media to launch targeted attacks. This example shows that angler phishing can often be made possible by many people who complain about organizations on social media.
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Organizations often use these complaints to try and mitigate the damage, usually by offering a refund. Scammers can hijack customer responses and ask them for their personal information.
Although they may be requesting settlement, it is done to compromise customers’ accounts.