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Phishing is not a new type of internet scam. First it was described in 1987. What is disturbing is that it still exists and continues to grow. 800 million phishing emails are sent out every day, according to Cisco.

Phishing is a type of internet scam where users receive an officially looking email as if it is sent by a bank or any other financial institution. These emails try to lure unsuspecting victims into sharing financial and personal information. It usually includes a link to a fraud website where visitors are asked to enter sensitive personal information: Social Security Number, birthday, mother’s maiden name. The intention here is to steal identity. Identity thieves can run your bills up. They will use your name and your address to commit crimes. They can also change address on your credit card account.

A very dangerous type of phishing is pharming. You can recognize a pharming link when you see digits in the link. When you click on the link, you might think you are going to a bank’s website. In reality, you will be going to a fraud  website.

How Do You Recognize a Phishing Attack?

You can expect the phishing email say something to the effect that your eBay account will be suspended if you don’t answer this phishing email. It can say that it is from PayPal advisory board and instruct you to click on a link to confirm your identity. Do not click! They want to steal identity. Email that participates in a phishing attack might ask you to make a phone call. Your phone number will be recorded and you will be asked your personal identification number.

Report Phishing Scam

To report a phishing scam, go to Anti-Phishing Working Group APWG is a law enforcement center that fights phishing. What do you report? A website that you suspect to be a phishing site. Also send the suspected email you received. Phishing emails are created in such a way that they look official. In early days of phishing scams there were lots of grammar errors in phishing emails. Today the crooks go to great extent to not let that happen in order not to look suspicious. Reporting phishing Scam helps APWG fight internet Fraud.

Play anti-phishing game to make sure you have a good understanding of how to avoid having problems if  identity theft happens Anti-Phishing  Game