Part 2 of the article on Internet Phishing:

  • 3. Do not click on links, download files or open attachments in emails from unknown senders. It is best to open attachments only when you are expecting them and know what they contain, even if you know the sender.

4. Never email personal or financial information, even if you are close with the recipient. You never know who may gain access to your email account, or to the person’s account to whom you are emailing.  You would really be surprised at just how many people are commonly sending their information all over cyberspace because someone was able to put together a fake email and copied and pasted template that sounds official.  If you already are comfortably banking with a solid institution you should never have a need to communicate with another.  Also check for available telphone numbers that you can call yo confirm anything suspicious.

5. Beware of links in emails that ask for personal information, even if the email appears to come from an enterprise you do business with. Phishing web sites often copy the entire look of a legitimate web site, making it appear authentic. To be safe, call the legitimate enterprise first to see if they really sent that email to you. After all, businesses should not request personal information to be sent via email.

  • 6. Beware of pop-ups and follow these tips:* Never enter personal information in a pop-up screen.* Do not click on links in a pop-up screen.

    * Do not copy web addresses into your browser from pop-ups.

    * Legitimate enterprises should never ask you to submit personal information in pop-up screens, so don’t do it.

  • FY!:  Always invest in a good pop up blocker for your personal computer.  It will save you a lot of headaches in dealing with this sort of thing
    • 7. Protect your computer with a firewall, spam filters, anti-virus and anti-spyware software. Do some research to ensure you are getting the most up-to-date software, and update them all regularly to ensure that you are blocking from new viruses and spyware.
    • Suggestions:  I always use Microsoft Essentials products on my computer.  Also Comodo produces excellent fire-walls and pop-up blockers.
  • 8. Check your online accounts and bank statements regularly to ensure that no unauthorized transactions have been made.

You should always be careful about giving out personal information over the Internet. Luckily, companies have begun to employ tactics to fight against phishers, but they cannot fully protect you on their own.  Don’t be afraid to use your own common sense.

I hope this information helps.  But at the end of the day it is important for you to use some of your own common sense.  Be skeptical about things that come across as too good to be true.  Because most of the time they absolutely are.  Phishing attacks are not only things that happen to people who are too old to understand that internet.  It gets the best of a lot of smart people who do not think before they click.  Don’t let that be you!.