Email Phishing - What Is It?
Simply put, email phishing is a trap that has been set to catch the receiver unawares and get access for the sender to your financial information. Most of these type of email scams are easy to recognize but every day the scammers get more and more sophisticated with the emails they send out.
by Sandra Wilson
Simply put, email phishing is a trap that has been set to catch the receiver unawares and get access for the sender to your financial information. Most of these type of email scams are easy to recognize but every day the scammers get more and more sophisticated with the emails they send out. These phishing emails, therefore, can become harder to recognize as time goes on.
Basically, most email phishing scams are an attempt to gain your information, both personal and financial. With this information, the phisher can assume your identity in order to, for example, set up fraudulent accounts or he can just outright steal money from your banking or other financial accounts.
One type of common email phishing scheme is where someone from another country supposedly needs to transfer funds to a bank account in the U.S. He requests you please help him get his inheritance, or whatever he claims he needs, out of his country. You can do this by allowing him to put the money in your bank account and for this service, you will receive a percentage or set amount. To show good faith, a small amount of money will be transferred to your account. Looks good but the next thing you know, most, if not all, of your money will be drained out of your account. This scam works by addressing your greed - do next to nothing and get paid for it.
There is another type of phishing email that is even harder to catch. It is an official looking email from your bank or credit card company or some other financial company. It requests that you update or modify your personal information at their site and provides you with a link to go there. Since it looks very official, many people click the link, go to the site and enter their login and password. After all, it looks just like your bank's site. This is what can make these scamming emails so much harder to detect. Everything looks like it should. However, you should be aware that most financial companies will not ask you to update your information this way.
One of the most important things that one can do to help prevent email phishing is to report each and every email that one gets that appears suspicious. It is far better to be too safe with your identity and finances than not safe enough.