Email is the most popular form of communication for businesses. It has helped many businesses to:
- Keep customers on the loop
- Reach many customers
- Build trust with clients
- Get valuable feedback
Perhaps, most crucially, it has made it possible to send messages in seconds, which was unheard of before its invention. As a result, many people have forgotten that email can also be dangerous when not used correctly.
There are many ways to identify danger with your email account. Here are is how:
What Are the Dangers to Email Security?
Dangers to email security are things that can cause your security to get breached. One main danger is hackers. Hackers are people who use their knowledge of computers and the internet to gain access to a system without permission or someone’s awareness.
Another danger to email security is phishing scams, where someone will try and trick you into providing account information or giving out personal information through an email that seems like it’s coming from a legitimate business or website by making the sender look trustworthy enough for you to trust them with your login credentials.
Types of Email Dangers
Phishing email dangers are the most common. The sender pretends to be someone you trust, often an administrator or co-worker. For example, they may pose as a bank or government agency asking for your account information and then will use it to take over that account. Also known as spoofing, this can happen if they’re trying to steal money from your company by accessing payroll systems.
Bcc dangers are another common email threat. In this case, the sender will send an email to someone but not show that person on the “To” or “CC” lines of the message. Instead, they may have put your name in one of those places without letting you know about it because they never want you to read the email.
Another threat is malware through email attachments. This can be ransomware or viruses that attach to your computer and then encrypt the files, rendering them useless until you pay money for a key to decrypt them.
Bad links are another danger in emails; these may look like absolute URLs but take you somewhere else when clicked on. Sometimes they’ll redirect you to another site, but other times they’ll download harmful files onto your computer.
How Can You Identify Email Scams (Phishing Scams)?
The first thing to know is that a scam or a phishing attempt requires the victim to take action, usually clicking on something in the email itself. An example might be an invitation from someone claiming they found your lost phone with all its contents intact, including X number of dollars. To get it back, you have to click on the link provided to pay for shipping costs.
If you look at that email closely, some things could tip off a user about its authenticity. One is that they don’t know who sent the mail or why they should believe them. Another would be that the claims are too good to be true, like getting back your phone with more money than you lost.
The main thing is to be aware that email threats exist. Do not click on links from people you don’t know, and make sure your passwords are strong. Keep your computer up-to-date as well! That way, you can protect yourself from some of the most common cyber security threats.