Could you spot a dodgy email?

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Olivia Storey

Fraudulent and malicious emails are on the rise, could you tell the difference between a real email and a fraudulent one?

You may have received a dodgy email from time to time; a fraudulent HMRC ‘click here to claim your tax rebate’, a secret uncle you have never heard of wants to send you a million pounds, or even a fake invoice from ‘Apple’ for your recent iTunes purchase that you did not make.

Email is the number one delivery method for malware as they are easy and often free to create, and can target multitudes with one hit. These nuisance emails can lead to data breaches, stolen credentials or even misappropriated financial details if not recognised, or dealt with efficiently.

Malicious emails have reached a new high, with one in every 359 emails carrying some kind of malware, which has doubled from the one in every 784 emails in January 2017. 60% of the malware present in these emails is delivered via JavaScript attachments.

Mark James, ESET IT Security Specialist, explains the best way to combat malware in emails, phishing attacks and scams within a company or organisation.

“With so many of our devices now able to compose, send and receive email from almost anywhere in the world, it’s no wonder that email is the number one attack vector for starting a cyber-attack.

“When that email lands in your inbox regardless of whether you know its fake, there is often an urge to open it just to make sure.

“We are naturally curious, we want to make sure, we want to believe others are trustworthy, but so many emails are only there to trick us.

“Teaching our users the need to understand, spot and report potentially dodgy emails is extremely important, and has proven its worth in gold.

“However, it needs to happen consistently and evolve around current threats.

“The same lecture every morning will end up falling on deaf ears.

“Yet with current attack methods and real life examples leading into reasons why it can quickly develop into a worst case scenario, like leading to huge data breaches, can help staff to become important members of the security team and not the weakest link.”


Did you know malicious emails could be so dangerous? Let us know on Twitter @ESETUK.


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