So called phishers try to catch the information about the account numbers and passwords of internet users. They deceive people with faked emails and websites that resembles exactly the originals of well known banks or electronic payment systems. They make people surrender their passwords and account numbers – and afterwards they clear their accounts.
This is a peril for internet merchants, affiliates and webmasters, because they often display email addresses on websites, ads or articles. Phishers may pick easily addresses from these sources.
Phishers try to worry you!
They write you stories as follows:
There have been unusual transactions on your account.
Your account is going to be suspended soon, because it lacks validation.
The database crashed down and has to be restored.
They have lost some email addresses and they need to update their database.
A case has been reported how they try to dupe the internet users. The g has been replaced with a q in the URL of citigroup. Thus the URL www.citigroup.com has been altered in www.citiqroup.com
They urge users to act immediately
The next step is that they urge their victims to act. They offer a link to a website, where people can type in their confidential information. If the people submit the demanded information, they open unvoluntarily the doors to a modern kind of thieves. The accounts of the victims can be looted within a few minutes.
How to protect your money?
Be aware: The serious and well known financial service companies never ask people by email for confidential information. I cite from an email by PayPal that I have received after reporting an ominous email to them: “PayPal and its representatives will NEVER ask you to reveal your password. There are NO EXCEPTIONS to this policy. If anyone claiming to work for PayPal asks for your password under any circumstances, by email or by phone, please refuse and immediately contact us via webform. . ”
This is the most important rule to protect your account!
Other financial services follow a policy similar to PayPal.
People may report to the financial services unusual emails. The more they know about such incidents, the better they can track them in order to find out some patterns about the abusers.
If the people feel uneasy about their accounts, they can check them through the web browser. They should type in manually the website address of the financial service into their browser. They can check matters there safely. But they never may type their confidential information in a form that has been sent by email!
It’s recommendable to change the password of electronic accounts from time to time.
By the way: I do not use my email address of the Pay Pal Account in any public statements. I use different email addresses there.
The origin of the word Phishing
The new internet term Phishing origins probably from the word Fishing. Phishing has been extracted from the word combination “password harvesting fishing”.
Further background information
More background information about actual kinds of abuse is available at the website www.scambusters.org It’s worthwhile to have a look what is going on in the world wide web.
Lil Waldner is a business economist. She is experienced in project management and marketing. She has worked as editor of newspapers and she has written booklets and essays with economic and public issues. Visit her web site: AGM Home Business