Stéphanie Gohier-Coulombe and Karine Benoit | Desjardins Group
What do you do when you receive an email or text message? Most of us open the message without giving it a second thought and then click on the attachments or links. And this is exactly what scam artists want you to do!
Every day, thousands of phishing attempts are made to steal confidential information through email or text messaging. These attempts are disguised under various pretexts, but what they have in common is that they're unsolicited.
Although we've been told about the telltale signs of phishing scams over the years, the growing number of ways we communicate is making it increasingly difficult to figure out what's real and what's not.
The best way to protect yourself is to stay alert because the possible consequences are serious: a cybercriminal could take remote control of your computer, you could lose data, files or pictures, or your personal and banking information could be stolen and used to commit fraud.
Don't be fooled!
Fraudsters have fine-tuned their techniques to target users, which makes it harder to identify phishing emails or text messages. They've become expert marketers and psychologists, knowing exactly which tactics to use to get you to act. Because fraud strategies are constantly evolving, scam artists tend to use situations such as an emergency, a potential financial gain or a problem.
Taking the time to get more information and validate the message's content before clicking or giving out your personal information is key.
- 40% of your daily actions are done automatically*
- On average, consumers send/receive 98 emails per day
Curiosity can get you in trouble
Be vigilant, patient and attentive to recognize a phishing scam. When in doubt:
- Don't click on any links
- Don't open attachments
- Don't download or authorize the posting of an image
- Don't reply to the sender because it confirms that your email address is valid
- Delete the email
* Source: The Radicati Group, Inc.