WHAT IS PHISHING?

I remember learning how “fish” with my dad and grandfather, but what is “phishing?”  Phishing occurs when someone sends you an email requesting personal information while pretending to be someone else, such as your bank.

Identity thieves send phishing emails to lure you into clicking on an impostor link or replying with the requested personal information, such as your password, account number or other personal identifying information.  The personal information is then used to perpetuate fraud.

Coincidentally, I received a Chase phishing email today.  Here it is:

Chase

Dear Client of Chase Bank,

This is an alert to help you for Protecting Your ACCOUNT.

At last two days our system record someone trying to enter on your account
so we have to inform you for update your information..

We hold your account until update your information …

log in to REDACTED then follow the steps

Sincerely, 
Chase Home Lending

Once you click on the links contained in the phishing email, your computer may become infected with malware, such as trojans or key loggers. Trojans can use your computer as a remote access site for identity thieves.  Key loggers can be used to copy your passwords and account numbers.

How does the identity thief get your email address? 

Data breaches are a great source of stolen personal identifying information, especially e-mail addresses.  RSA was recently hacked.  Since the RSA data breach, users of SecurID have been sent phishing emails – SecurID users targeted by fake NSA email.

Like the Chase phishing email, the RSA email has spelling errors.  The RSA phishing email also has impostor links.  While the text looks like the real thing, when you click on the hyperlink you are taken to fraudulent site.

Here are some tips to identify phishing emails

  • You don’t have an account with the company
  • The e-mail has spelling or grammatical errors
  • Website link is unofficial site
  • Email asks you for personal identifying information (e.g., Social Security number, account number, date of birth).

Your bank should never send you an email requesting your personal identifying information.  Why?  Because your bank already has your personal information!

If you are a victim of identity theft, contact attorney Micah Adkins for a free identity theft information kit. 1-800-263-9091.

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