IBM cites human error as the source of 95% of cybersecurity breaches. Here are the 4 key things to check in the emails you receive to help you keep your information safe.
1. Who is it from?
The organization or person name offered should match the address that follows it. Emails will not send from a domain with a typo. So your friend will never send messages from an address @gmial.com. Also, companies are very aware of their marketing. Therefore you’re very unlikely to receive a special deal from firstname.lastname@example.org. If you spot a typo anywhere in the sender address, know the sender is likely an imposter.
2. How do they address you?
If you do business with an organization, they will usually use your name as an opener. No one wants to feel like a number, and businesses know this. If the email does not address you by name, you may have cause for suspicion.
3. Are there links?
Don’t click on links from unknown senders as a habit.
If you think you can trust the sender, use your mouse to hover over the included links without clicking on them. When using a computer, the URL where the link will direct you should appear. If the web address is suspicious, feel free to move on. Similarly, if all the links direct you to the exact same place, make sure they all are claiming to link you to the same place. If the “sign up now” link takes you to the same URL as a blog link, there is a problem.
If you are still unsure whether a link is ok to visit, run it through Ironscales’ new [free] Fake Login Page Scanner to help you if you find a login page suspicious. No need to sign in: just paste the URL in their search box, and you’re good to go!
4. Is there a footer?
Any business sending you marketing emails should at a minimum contain a physical address for the organization and an unsubscribe button. These are legal requirements. If either is missing, the sender is either breaking the law in their marketing or breaking the law by impersonating the business “sending” the material.
As always, you’re better safe than sorry. If something is suspect, do what you can to confirm with the sender another method or just delete the message and go on about your day.
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