Friday June 7 is National Phish & Chip Day – a campaign to raise awareness of phishing scams.
More than 90 per cent of all malware still being delivered to victims via phishing emails.
Victims lost over £19m to phishing scams between April 2018 and March 2019.
This week Hertfordshire Constabulary will be supporting the national Phish and Chips Day campaign to raise awareness of phishing scams.
Phishing scams involve emails, texts, phone calls and social media to trick their targets into revealing passwords and other personal details, to help scammers access accounts or collect your data. The malicious emails often look like authentic messages from your bank or other online services, and contain links to fake websites, or contain files which will install malware on devices if they are downloaded.
Phishing attacks are a common security challenge that both individuals and companies across the UK face on a regular basis, with more than 90 per cent of all malware still being delivered to victims via email. Between April 2018 and March 2019, social media and email account compromises were the most common cyber crimes reported to Action Fraud, with victims losing a combined total of £19m. Analysis shows that phishing emails were a common enabler for these compromises. That’s why this National Phish and Chip Day (7th June) we’re supporting the national Cyber Protect campaign and raising awareness of how people can protect themselves from phishing.
Some of the most reported scams to Action Fraud start with an unsolicited text, email or call. From emails and text messages asking you to “verify” account details to cold callers claiming to be from your bank, the goal of a phishing attack is usually the same, to trick you into revealing personal and financial information.
Criminals are constantly evolving the tactics they use to carry out these phishing attacks, which is why it’s sometimes difficult for people to know what to look out for. We’ve got some simple advice that can help you protect yourself from most phishing attacks – don’t click on the links or attachments in suspicious emails, and never respond to unsolicited messages and calls that ask for your personal or financial details. If you think the communication might be genuine, then contact the company directly using contact details you know to be correct, such as the phone number on official correspondence, and not the contact information provided in the message.
Phillipa Phipps, Cyber Protect Officer from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Serious Fraud and Cyber-crime Unit, said: “Phishing scams aim to trick you into revealing your personal data or lure you to a fake website that looks like your bank or other online accounts. Often you’ll get fake emails from companies who you don’t even have accounts with, but sometimes these emails can be very convincing. Never click on links in emails or download attachments unless you are 100 per cent sure they are legitimate.
“Sometimes the emails will say that your account has been compromised, is going to be shut down or you are being charged for something you haven’t ordered. Don’t be fooled, the scammers are trying to panic you into handing over your details so that they can access your accounts.”
Here’s what to look out for:
- Getting an email or text out of the blue asking you for your personal or financial info? Don’t take the bait!
- Messages asking you to “confirm” or “verify” your personal or financial details are a common lure used by criminals. Don’t get hooked.
- Phishing reports to @Actionfrauduk show that telecoms companies, tech brands and Government departments are the most commonly spoofed sectors.
- Don’t respond to messages or calls that ask for your personal or financial info.