With tax day looming just ahead, it comes as no surprise that the number of phishing emails has surged as well. They are not only targeting individuals, by emailing as someone legitimate from your bank or Human resources department but are also targeting companies in hopes of acquiring personal information and Social Security Numbers of all its employees.
It is especially tough for people to decide which emails or phone calls are legitimate and which are not. There are a few things that you should know about phishing to avoid being victimized.
Phishing Peaks during the Tax Season
Phishing peaks around the tax season the most, followed by the holiday season. The reason is that most people are accustomed to entering their personal information, particularly their Social Security Numbers and bank account numbers, on various websites during the tax season. Thieves, then, use this information for filing a false tax return.
Knowing the Difference between Phishing and Spear Phishing
Phishing emails are non-specific. They are quick and easy and are usually sent out in mass quantities.
Spear phishing, on the other hand, is much more targeted and personalized. Due to advances in social media, it is not that difficult to find out about a ‘Target’s’ workplace and personal likes and dislikes. Once this is known, a highly customized and legitimate-looking email is sent, which is likely to be clicked on by the target.
Be Wary of
1. E-mails which include some kind of time-limit.
2. E-mails from your bank or company, if you didn’t opt for emails from them.
3. E-mails asking for your personal information.
4. E-mails including web-links.
Tax Help MD
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