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Phishing is a scam that uses fake emails, phone calls and websites to trick people into handing over sensitive information like passwords, credit card numbers or bank account details. It’s a type of social engineering that’s becoming increasingly sophisticated and effective, with bad actors using professional marketing techniques to make their messages appear authentic.

Social media is a new and growing target for criminals, who can use this platform to persuade victims to divulge personal or corporate information that’s valuable to them. It also provides an avenue for cybercriminals to spread malware, which can then be used to access a victim’s accounts.

Spear phishing is one of the most sophisticated phishing techniques, and bad actors are getting better at it. They do their research to find out about companies, employees and potential targets.

They then craft a phishing email that’s catered to the victim’s interests and personal or corporate details. The phishing email can then contain a link to a malicious website or an attachment that could download malware onto the computer.

The phishing email could also be filled with fear-based phrases such as, “Your account has been suspended.” These kinds of messages have a high click through rate because they sound authoritative and scary.

The best way to avoid a phishing attack is to educate your employees about the risks of phishing and to have an automated system that can flag communication from anyone that might be malicious. This training should be conducted at the onboarding of new employees, and periodically reviewed.