A beginner’s guide to fending off hackers and scammers: Part 1 – Careful email management

In Information Security ByTeam Acumin / 21st December 2015

Following the recent and very public attack on telecoms provider TalkTalk, which saw the details of approximately 157,0000 accessed by scammer, a conversation on how to keep the nation protected from hackers and scammers, who will go to great lengths to access our sensitive data, has begun.

Luckily, with a bit of common sense, it is imminently possible to ensure that you, at least, are protected from the majority of the scams these hackers attempt to perpetrate. As long as you educate yourself, you can easily avoid being a victim.

Email management

One of the simplest things you can do to avoid being taken in by internet scammers is manage your emails efficiently.

Many scammers, once they have your details, will try to access your accounts by sending out spook emails. Quite often, these details will claim that there is a problem with your bank/PayPal/Amazon account etc. and try to convince you that you need to click a link in order to remedy the problem.

Unfortunately for anyone who falls for this trick, the link contained in the email will almost certainly lead to a phishing website run by the scammers to obtain your personal information.

Verify the email

In order to avoid being sucked in by such a scam, you should simply avoid clicking on the links inside the email, typing in the official email address of the company to your address bar yourself.

If you are in any doubt, you may also consider calling up the company the email is supposedly from to verify its authenticity.

If you find that the email you were sent is a scam, you should immediately mark it as spam and delete it from your inbox to avoid mix-ups, and to ensure you get no more emails from the fake address.