Do you click on the links in all the emails that you read? Did you ever notice an email from a business that you had never visited before or signed up for their email list? Chances are some of those emails are phishing emails. By “Phishing emails“, I’m talking about clicking on bogus links that in the end will result in you accidentally giving up some personal information to the wrong person. Even if you give up your first and last name with your home address, these scammers/hackers can use this information to do harm to you. By doing harm I mean not by beating you up but stealing your identity, cracking into your other passwords or even hacking into your computer.
You must be saying, how can someone hack into my computer when I’m actually using it? You know most computers/laptops typically have their “remote desktop: feature enabled for support reason’s. Let’s say I purchased a new dell laptop and got the support plan (just make-believe example folks) and the plan involves logging in remotely to troubleshoot the computer issue or to fix a corrupted file…etc. Hackers can find ways to tricking you into giving up little bit’s of information over a time span and then POW, go after you. You might even see your mouse cursor moving around your screen and information being deleted from the hard drive. Even worse see the hacker change your login password to your laptop.
Do you have a PayPal account? I hope so because just about everyone has one these days. I’ve received many bogus emails from PayPal support throughout the years saying that my account got limited, need to verify address or a dispute is active. The typical gut reaction to reading that email which is formated almost the same way the official PayPal support site use’s is to click on the link and try to login to your account. Well folks you could have just been a victim of a phishing scam and might end up with your paypal account hacked and you unable to login to it because your password and other information just got changed by the scammer/hacker. When I get PayPal emails and even the ones when I purchased a product or service/receive a payment, I manually type in paypal.com into my browser to login to check out why I got this paypal email. Better safe then loose your account which is verified. I do this for all business’s that I do business with or have the official URL saved in my web favorites so I know that I’m on the official site and not risking anything.
These Phishing email scammers are so good at recreating a bogus site to trick you into thinking it’s the real legit site that many newbies get screwed. Some phishing email scam links will add malware on your PC or flat-out computer virus that can delete your OS (operating system) files that will make you have to reinstall your Operating system and be unable to back up all your files. I know that you think your virus protection software catch’s all bad emails but they don’t actually. When you get an email from a company or from someone who you never had contact with before, try to hover your mouse over the links to see what that URL looks like. You can tell from the URL if it’s a referral link, strange characters or just the official URL.
For more information about phishing emails and links to how to report these, visit this link: http://www.us-cert.gov/nav/report_phishing.html
I don’t claim to be an expert but I was just voicing my opinion on phishing emails and how to always be on the alert before clicking on links in email’s. It just takes one time to click on a bad link and you could end up with malware or even worse end up giving some bit’s of personal information to the wrong person who knows how to use small bit’s of information to do a lot of damage to you. If you got more links for people to read about phishing email scams then please post them in the blog comment’s. I want people to land on this blog post and see the useful resources in the comment section.
Happy Mothers day to all the mothers. It just turned Midnight a few seconds ago in my timezone.