5 Ways to Spot Spam and Phishing Emails

Spam and Phishing attacks are getting harder and harder to detect because hackers always find new ways to penetrate even large organizations that have the best software defense system.  Because Spam and Phishing threats spread through emails, software systems could only do so much. 

Here are 5 ways on how to save yourself from threats before you open an email.

1. Check the email address or source

It is always best practice to check the legitimacy of an email via the address source and not the display name. This is because hackers usually use display names that may appear like the ones you usually get from, like a name of a bank or an institution.

2. Don’t fall for click-baits

Phishing emails are getting more sophisticated, asking the reader to click on a link by rousing fear and creating a sense of urgency (e.g., requiring immediate attention) or excitement (e.g., winning the lottery).

It is best to hover to the link that you are being led to, and manually type it on another window and check for incorrect spelling. (make sure you do not hit enter)

3. Check grammar and spelling errors

Legitimate emails are very particular in grammar and spelling. It pays to read carefully and not just skim through emails to make sure you are not being led-on to a phishing site.

4. Impersonal salutation

Notice how you are being addressed in the email. If a salutation may seem too generic and not specifically with your name, it could most likely be a phishing email.

5. Asking for your personal information

Banks and other legitimate businesses will never ask for sensitive information via email. Be very careful when giving out your personal information especially when this is asked through a suspicious landing page or a downloaded attachment.

While applying these tips will help save you from security damage, it is always best to go with common sense, not to panic, and think rationally if you sense something suspicious. Report to your IT department or do not act as requested if an email does not seem legitimate.

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