What Is A Phishing Attack? – The Different Types And Prevention Methods!

phishing attack

The current world is open to all sorts of individuals with information available on easy and accessible platforms. It has become effortless for anyone to gather data over any situation, topic, or concern within minutes. This invention has made research itself simpler and faster than before. However, there are always two sides of the coin. Despite the fact that the internet is convenient, there are people that misuse it. And such people are known as Hackers. The concept itself is becoming a popular form of earning money as well. This involves hackers who utilize phishing attacks to rob their victims.



What Is The Meaning Of A Phishing Attack?

phishing attack

Source: Associations now

Phishing is basically a form of hacking where the attacker steals login information, personal data, and credit card numbers. The common form of this attack is done through messages especially emails. It is mostly performed at a normal level but can involve stealing information from the corporate world as well. There have been cases where companies had been left with nothing after such an attack. Additionally, there are various types of such attacks, all with the main purpose of snatching sensitive information.

Example Of A Phishing Attack:

The typical example of a phishing attack commences through sending an email to the potential victim. Firstly, the email seems as if it’s from a reputable or credible place. The main thing is that the attacker wants to intrigue the person reading the email, to click it. So most of their techniques include asking the user to change their password before it expires. Through this method, the user then clicks the link because it appears believable enough and then is redirected to a page that looks just like the real. These attackers copy the features of that website to hide the fact that they are hackers. Then, the user puts their login information which the hacker gets access to. Once you click the link a malicious error enters your system which gives the hacker complete control.

What Are The Three Types Of Phishing Attacks? 

Source: thecybersecurityplace

Even though there is a particular set method of conducting this attack, there are still different types and victims that the attacker chooses. There are phishing attack kits that people can buy on the dark web. It has all the details and tactics regarding the conduction of a successful phishing attack. This form of hacking is becoming popular day-by-day especially because of the major usage of emails itself. Every hefty transaction or necessary business details can be swapped through emails. This is why as such a platform is hacked, then all the important information just goes flying into the hands of the hacker. Through using emails, there are several ways of operating a phishing attack.

Here are some of the common three types of phishing attacks:

Malware Download:

An attacker would send you an email which as you click can activate a malware into your computer. The malware then outs your control on the system and gives authority to the hacker. Most of such viruses are within zip or MS files.

Email Phishing:

Almost all types of phishing campaigns are run solely on emails. The attackers disguise the website well enough so that it looks like the real deal. However, that doesn’t mean that they can manipulate or copy the entire thing. The links of the website created by the attacker is usually slightly different. The email talks about logging into the website for urgent purposes. This is the reason why phishing scams have a higher successful rate than any other. It takes a couple of minutes for the user to enter their login credentials and all their possessions leave their hands. For example, a phishing hacker emails a fake bank web-page to a user who then clicks it to put in his information. The real problem is that finding out whether the site they are redirected to is fake or not, is difficult. This is because the changes are barely any different.



Spear phishing:

When the attacker targets a particular individual for the hacking then that is known as spear phishing. The attacker tries to find out about the target first by checking out their presence on the online world. After identifying, the victims receive emails that seem as if they had been written by someone that they know. For example, a cyber criminal sending the infected email to a higher executive, who then clicks the link. The company’s information, their personal data, and other necessary confidential data is stolen. In order to gain an upper-hand over an organization, these attackers tend to make higher officials as their victims. This is because they use their personal emails over the business ones and also possess sensitive information regarding the organization.

How Do You Protect Against Such An Attack?

phishing attack

Source: RT.com

Phishing attacks have prevention methods as well, just like any other scams, . The first step is to look at the URL of the link that has been sent to you. There is always a difference in the authentic link than the bugged one. Also, before clicking make sure that you use a different email if the link seems fishy. But once finding out that it might be bugged, it is better to not click it at all in the first place. For employees or organizations, it is better to look into a two-factor authentication (2FA) because it protects your system especially when you deal with different applications. Try to install an anti-phishing tool into your computer so that you don’t need to take extra measures firstly. Not to mention, change your passwords often. In the end, the more you check your accounts and remain steady or updated regarding the doings of your personal information, the more you remain secured.

Regardless, not everyone falls victim to such scams but it is always necessary to stay safe because having your personal details outed to the world is terrifying.



What do you think of the situation? Have you ever been a victim to a phishing attack? If so, what measures did you take to improve the situation? Share your thoughts.

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