When it comes to emails, it can be easy to click on dubious links that install malware or unwittingly share your personal information.
For this reason, it’s important to know how to avoid clicking on suspicious links. Below are five tips to make sure that you never do.
1. Check Who Sent the Email And To Whom
The first thing to look at is the sender. If you know the sender, the email is far more likely to be trustworthy – unless their email account was hacked.
Malicious links are often found in messages sent from questionable accounts and to a large number of people. This means that you need to check who sent the message and to whom. If the addresses and list of recipients look suspicious or unfamiliar, it probably is and you shouldn’t click on anything in it.
2. Be Wary Of The Subject Line
If an email subject line looks sketchy and doesn’t match up with the content in the email, it is probably best to delete it. Therefore, make sure to double-check the source and subject line of the email to make sure it isn’t a phishing attempt.
3. Check The Content
As we mentioned above, it’s important to check the content of any email you receive that seems even slightly suspicious. Often, in the case of phishing, the email will be attempting to mimic another company that you regularly interact with, so check for any misspellings, especially in the sender’s email address.
Other things to look out for include bad grammar and language that doesn’t make sense. This could mean the content was automatically generated for a large-scale phishing scam.
4. Scrutinize Hyperlinks And Attachments
As a general rule, don’t click any links or open any attachments unless you are absolutely sure who you are receiving the email from.
Many people have been lured into thinking that they are interacting with their bank, when in fact the hyperlinks and/or attachments have contained malware or are attempts to steal their personal information.
However, this can also happen with senders that you know. If you weren’t expecting an attachment or the sender doesn’t usually attach files, it’s best not to click on them – especially .PDF and .ZIP files!
One easy way to check for dubious hyperlinks is to hover your mouse over the link. If there are misspelled words, a lot of text and numbers, and the link doesn’t quite match up to the hyperlink content, it’s probably a phishing scam.
5. Be Aware Of The Date And Time
Since many phishing attempts are carried out at scale, it means they will often be sent at odd hours. For this reason, it’s a good idea to check the date and time of the message.
Always Think Before You Click!
It’s always better to be safe than sorry! We hope that after reading this, you will be more cautious before opening or clicking on links in the emails you receive.
Need more information on how to better protect your organization against suspicious emails and cyberattacks? Contact one of our MicroAge locations!