Risk Services of Arkansas - February 2019

Watch Out for These Social Engineering Red Flags

the others on the list? Does the mix of people seem unusual? If so, that’s another red flag. However, the biggest sign of danger is hyperlinks. Of course, many ordinary emails contain links to other sites, but emails with only long hyperlinks, absent of any other content, are highly suspicious. Make sure, before navigating to any link on an email, that you first hover over it in order to see the destination address. If it’s something suspicious, like “Microsoft-Support.com,” don’t click it. This is especially true if the sender is asking you click a link or open an attachment to avoid a negative consequence or gain something of value. Many cybercriminals have evolved past the “Nigerian Prince” scams of yore and can craft disturbingly convincing emails with just a little research. With that in mind, it is vital that you’re constantly vigilant, well informed, and thorough with your investigation of every piece of email that hits your inbox.

In today’s world of rampant cybercrime, it pays to stay abreast of the latest digital threats, and none pose a greater danger to your organization than social engineering tactics — scams used to trick your unsuspecting employees into navigating to malicious sites, installing malware directly into your network, or giving up precious customer data. The key to staying safe is to not only educate yourself on the signs of suspicious emails, but to teach your team to keep an eye out for them as well. Whenever you receive an email, you should first confirm that it’s from someone you ordinarily communicate with. If it’s from someone uncommon, or someone outside your organization, that’s a red flag. Anytime you don’t know the sender personally — especially if the sender is asking some action of you — you should approach with caution. Also look out for who the email is addressed to. Were you carbon- copied on an email sent to multiple recipients? Do you personally know

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