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Phishing is the act of attempting to acquire important, personal information such as passwords or credit card numbers by pretending to be a legitimate source. A common way to accomplish this sort of attack is via phishing emails. There has been an influx of phishing email attacks against university users, making knowledge about phishing attacks and password security incredibly important for UW-Eau Claire faculty, staff, and students.
When a hacker is provided with your password via a phishing attack, he or she has access to all your personal information on record with UW-Eau Claire. This means a hacker could do the following (and more):
If you use the same password for other accounts (e.g. online bank account, Facebook, etc.), hackers would have access to all those accounts as well. This also means that if another of your accounts is compromised, hackers have access to your UWEC account as well. Therefore, it is strongly advised that your UW-Eau Claire account password be unique.
Phishing emails tend to have a similar look and feel. Once you learn to identify them, it is usually pretty easy to differentiate them from legitimate emails. Below you will see some common characteristics of phishing emails as well as information regarding how to use these characteristics to identify an email as a phishing attack.
Also, view this annotated phishing email example that points out frequent characteristics of phishing emails.
In the end, there are several key points that you need to remember to keep your information safe:
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