What you should know about PHISHING and SMISHING

Happy Spring from Grace-Marie!

I wanted to bring your attention to a matter that is important to your safety and security of your assets. PHISHING and SMISHING!!

Phishing uses email or malicious websites to solicit personal information by posing as a trustworthy organization. For example, an attacker may send and email seemingly from a reputable credit card company or financial institution that requests account information, often suggesting that there is a problem. When users respond with the requested information, attackers can use it to gain access to the accounts.

Smishing is just like phishing only it is done through text message. Often the text will contain a website or phone number. The phone number often has an automated voice response system.

We have had reports of our clients’ receiving calls from either MEDICARE or an insurance company saying that they needed to change plans for whatever reason. These callers sound official and they use scare tactics to get people to change their plans. MEDICARE or INSURANCE COMPANIES ARE NOT ALLOWED TO CALL TO SOLICIT FOR PART D or ADVANTAGE PLANS. If you get a call like this, ask for their name, and tell the caller that you are calling Medicare to verify. They will usually hang up. If you receive a suspicious text or email, block the number or address, and delete it without engaging.

Here are some other Do’d and Don’ts that may help you protect yourself, your assets, and your identification.

Here is a technique to help you defend yourself against PHISHING and SMISHING>>> T.H.R.E.A.T.T.

Target- Remember we are all targets for cyber criminals at work and at home so always stay vigilant.

Human Factor- If an email, text, or voicemail feels off for any reason, that is enough to be wary of it.

Relationship- Do you ordinarily have a relationship with the sender and have had legitimate contact with them previously?

Exposed- Are any links exposed so the real destination is clearly written or shown or using a shortening URL service (http://bit.ly/d32mh-k) or misspelling a legitimate business name?

Ambiguous- Does the message ask you to open an attachment or click a link for give more information?

Time- Does the message ask you to act quickly?

Think Before You Click

I hope this information helps you protect yourself and you family!