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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Are you being phished?

Are you being phished is a difficult statement to understand if one exactly does not know What is phishing?
So What is phishing?

Phishing is one of very popular internet scam in which the users are lured to disclose their personal information such as credit card number, account id, passwords etc.. which can then be easily misused. So phishing can be defined as activities causing identity theft of a person. Such kind of identity theft can be big loss to an individual or to an organisation. In office when one is too much indulged in work phishing goes unnoticed as a common phishing scam starts with an e-mail message that looks like an official notice from a trusted source through which recipients are directed to a fraudulent Web site where they are asked to provide personal information.

Costs of phishing

  • Phishing results in loss in money as well as time of owner.

  • Financial institutions also suffer from reduced employee and IT productivity, loss of network resources, legal liability and damage to their brand name and reputation.
  • From Customer’s perspective, their trust in Online payment systems and the ability of financial institutions to mitigate fraud is diminished over successful phishing attacks.

Work Around

-Awareness is first step for prevention. Be aware of best online practices while working on web.

Some are listed below:
  1. Be very careful while providing personal information in a reply to e-mail message. You need to verify the sender and purpose carefully before providing such

  2. Avoid clicking on Suspicious Links/Unknown llinks in a e-mail

  3. Don't send personal information in regular e-mail messages Regular e-mail messages are not encrypted and are like sending a post card. You need to use Secure Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions (S/MIME) for sending digitally signed and encrypted message.

  4. Make sure the Web site in which you are making a transaction uses encryption. The Web address should be preceded by https:// instead of the usual http:// in the browser's Address bar. There should be lock icon on browser's status bar doubleclicking on which will display to display the digital certificate for the site.
  5. Use Anti-Virus/Firewall to protect your PC. It is important to use a firewall, keep your computer updated, and use antivirus software, especially if you connect to the Internet through a cable modem or a digital subscriber line (DSL) modem>/li>
  6. Whenever you make a online transaction monitor the transaction carefully to make sure that the charges levied are correct

Note: Just visit Microsoft support site for complete information

- Use Anti-Phishing Software

Using Anti-Phishing Software can help in detecting phishing scam. Anti-phishing software can be described as computer programs that are capable of identifying phishing content contained in a websites or e-mail. This tool gets integrated with web browsers and e-mail clients as tool bar so that whenever viewer visits a website or opens an e-mail actual domain name is displayed. This will help the user in distinguishing legitimate website from fraud ones that vicariously act as legitimate. One such tool is Phishing Detector Publisher's Description. It’s a premier free Fair Trade Authority Phishing Detector plug-in for Outlook Express and Outlook used for spotting phishing and email frauds. This Anti-phishing tool helps in detecting Phishings/Email Frauds/Spoofed emails. Phishing Detector v.1.0 is able to recognize phishing emails pretending to come from eBay, PayPal, Amazon, eGold and hundreds of other financial institutions. Its free version can be downloaded from various websites such as soft32

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Using Anti-Phishing feature of
Microsoft Outlook

  • Join Anti-Phishing Work Group

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