I think we’ve all gotten those random, easily identified, scam emails, but there are a lot more that come in with more sophistication and are harder to spot. Emails can now come from people that appear to be your customers or vendors you work with frequently. They can also look like messages from your bank saying that your account has been breached. Their goal is to look enough like the real thing to make the threat of their message make your heart beat faster and click the link without thinking it through. So, what should you be doing to get secure email and keep your information and network safe?
- Check the sender email address
Checking the email address is usually the best place to look first to see if it is a real email or a fraud. Something is always a little off about the email address. It could be blatant, like a completely different name as the email address. It can also be small, like a misspelling in the word. Either way, it is a great place to double check before you click that link.
- Don’t entirely rely on your email filtering service
While these services do a great job of finding the most common spam emails, they are not 100% secure. If someone is targeting their attack at you, or your company, they will craft an email that will be able to make it through your spam filter.
- Use the main logins
If you are gravely concerned that your personal information or accounts have been compromised, don’t click the link in the email. Take the extra time and steps to log in to your account how you usually do. Taking your time will save you from clicking on a malicious link and exposing your data to hackers. If it were a real threat, you would still be able to see the information, but if it weren’t, you wouldn’t be falling into the hacker’s trap.
- Don’t open those attachments
If an email comes through with an attachment, be wary before clicking it. Hesitation is especially crucial if you aren’t expecting a file, don’t know the sender, or just think it is suspicious. The easiest way for a hacker to gain access to your data is for you to open a malicious attachment. It immediately gives them access to everything. When in doubt, send it to your IT person to double check. Or call the person it is coming from to make sure they sent it, or just delete it.
Email security all boils down to being aware of what you are clicking on and opening. The more you question something before you click it, the more secure your email and network will remain. If you think your staff needs some training on email security, we offer a User Awareness Training. It is a monthly fee that includes tips, hints, and tricks to stay safe. It also consists of a test email that gets sent to your staff once a month with a report to let you know who fell for the phishing email, and who didn’t. Contact us today to learn more!