Smartphone and the internet have become a significant part of our lives. Although our life is easier, but we can’t argue with the fact that it has opened a door for cyber-attacks as well. With time, the internet is becoming a threatening place, as cyber attacker is implementing new approaches every day to infect your devices for their advantage. Spear phishing attacks are one of the approaches that is used by cyber criminals to get their hands on your accounts and data.
In this post, we are going to share a guide to protect yourself from spear phishing attacks. However, before going further let’s discuss what is spear phishing attack?
What is Spear Phishing Attack?
Spear phishing attack is one of the forms of phishing that initiated to target people for financial benefits. The motive of these attacks is to steal information.
Cyber bullies send a phishing email to the victim by pretending that sent email is from their bank and ask the victim to share their personal and financial information. The attacker first acquires the personal data about the user’s family, friend, location, employer, recently purchased and hometown. Once they are done gathering the information, they craft an email for the target user by including the acquired details to gain the confidence of the user. Mostly attacker uses the trusted source like your bank or retailer.
The basic motive of spear phishing attacks is to gain confidential data of the users through malicious purposes.
How to Protect Yourself From Spear Phishing Attacks?
Attackers are using various and advanced techniques to target their users. These methods are extremely sophisticated so there is no easy fix to prevent them. Moreover, cyber bullies are using the impersonating a trusted source which gives them an extra edge. So, here are some of the hacks to protect yourself from spear phishing attacks.
Be Vigilant on Social Media Platforms:
Social media platform is one of the best ways to know the personal life and whatever is going on with that person just by visiting the account. In fact, some of the intruders are using social media platforms to intrude user privacy. It is important to enable privacy settings to ensure no one with evil intention can access to your personal information. In fact, when attackers want to target a specific person then they gather information from social media platform and craft the text message or email based on that information.
Also Read: Businesses Need An Anti-Phishing Plan
Use Strong Credentials:
Using the weak and common password can make your device prone to cyber-attacks. In fact, when you use a password then it bolsters your security but using the same password for various accounts gives the benefits to attackers to intrude your multiple accounts just by cracking one account.
If you are one of those who is not able to remember their passwords and prefer to keep one password for all the accounts, then you can make slight changes to the password by adding an alphabet or number such as password12 and 12password. It is recommended to use a password which is a combination of numbers, letters and special characters.
Do Not Ignore Updates:
Keeping your software up-to-date is not less day a hustle but doing it on regular basis can prevent your device from spear phishing attacks. These updates not only fix minor bugs and issues but also do the security patches. Regular updates ensure your device is less vulnerable to such attacks.
Spot A Suspicious Email:
One of the basic rules to stay safe is not to open attachments which you have received from untrusted or unknown sources. Whenever you get any suspicious email you need to check the subject line of the email and check the URL of the email to ensure your safety and security.
Execute A Security Training Program:
If you are running a business, then you need to execute a security training programs to ensure you are one step ahead of being attacked by spear phishing attacks. Executing security training programs can detect the loopholes of security and helps you to do the patchwork. In fact, apart from protecting you from such attacks, these training programs will teach you what to do when you’ve been attacked.
Must Read: How to Spot a Phishing Email?
You can take help of email inspectors who is specialized to identify about the upcoming threats, provide threat protection, block spear phishing attempts, and warn you about received suspicious emails.