Phishing is the act of attempting to acquire important, personal information such as passwords, credit card number, bank account information, by pretending to be a legitimate source. Phishing emails tend to have the same look and feel. Once you learn to identify them, it is usually pretty easy to differentiate them from legitimate emails. Phishing emails may contain some of the following characteristics:
- "Click Here" to confirm or update your personal information: Sometimes this is accompanied with an urgent message to make you act first, think later.
- Links in the email: If you see a link in a suspicious email, do not click it. Instead, hover your mouse over the link to see if the address matches the link in the message.
- Sign "Help Desk" or "Your IT Support": When you receive an email, look at the "From" address and see if it is our address (firstname.lastname@example.org.) If the email comes from a UWEC user, it is likely because their account has been compromised and is sending out spam.
Legitimate companies will never ask you to provide your personal information. Important information, such as your password, should never be shared with anyone. It is vital that you do not enter personal information when you receive a suspicious email. If you receive an email and are unsure whether or not it is a phishing attempt, do not hesitate to contact the Help Desk.