Phishing – The practice of sending out fake email messages that look as if they come from a trusted person or institution——usually a bank— in order to trick people into handing over confidential information. The emails often direct you to a website that looks like that of the real financial institution. But it is a fake and has been rigged to collect your personal information, such as passwords, credit card numbers and bank account numbers, and transmit them to the Bad Guys.
Phishing attacks on Facebook users increased 4.07 percent in June alone and other social networking sites such as Habbo have increased 6.25 percent. Many of these phishing emails are considered spam. The report disclosed that the volume of spam in mail traffic increased slightly compared to May and averaged 83.3 percent. Yep…that sounds like, on average, over 8 out of every 10 emails you receive are spam and of them, some are phishing attacks that contain both phishing links and malicious code. The report goes on to predict that Google+, the new social networking site from Google, will spawn a surge in phishing spam as the newcomer’s popularity grows.
The report states that the most popular topics for the phishing spam emails were Osama bin Laden’s death, the last Harry Potter movie, and the anniversary of Michael Jackson’s death.
In my opinion, the cybercriminals are attacking the most vulnerable users on the Internet, Facebook users. Like predators in the wild, they’re singling out the easy “kills” from the rest of the herd to attack them and steal their money. Therefore, Facebook users must strengthen their skills in avoiding attack and capture by learning to avoid tempting messages to click on an interesting topic, just to satisfy their curiosity. I know, I know…it’s just not fair: Facebook and social networking in general is so much fun…no rules, free spirit, find new friends, etc., etc., etc. But listen to me carefully.
Facebook users: Get a grip! Get over it! The days of flitting around the Internet irresponsibly, ignoring boring Internet security practices are over…OVER. Should you continue to ignore Internet security best practices, you do so at your own peril.
Be very careful out there…it’s dangerous!!
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