In October 2016 CNN reported, “A phishing email sent to Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta may have been so sophisticated that it fooled the campaign's own IT staffers, who at one point advised him it was a legitimate warning to change his password.” In March 2017, now French President Emmanuel Macron’s campaign was hacked using a phishing scam that dumped numerous records into the public domain just days before the election.
Not just high profile politicians get hacked, American businesses of all sizes are now under siege. From 2013-2016 American Business have been scammed out of $1.6 billion, or $500 million per year. And those are just the cases that were reported and investigated by the FBI, as many businesses don’t report cybercrime.
What are Phishing Emails and Why are They So Effective?
Phishing emails are fraudulent emails that use social engineering (psychological manipulation) to trick the recipient to:
Anyone can be fooled
Imagine getting an email from a trusted vendor requesting payment to a new bank account. The email looks exactly like the invoices you’ve received in the past and contains enough information about your relationship with the vendor to appear credible. See Below
You’ll notice the cleverly disguised links to redirect you to a fake website. At first glance, these links look like a legitimate addresses, but once you hover over them the real address is revealed.
Cybercrime is an ever-evolving threat to American businesses
Phishing emails are designed to by-pass your anti-virus, anti-malware, and firewall and play on the recipients fears, usually by threatening action such as disabling your account.
The best defense is to take a pro-active risk-based approach to your data and network security.
Here’s what you can do today to protect your profits, reputation, employees, and vendors: