You might be familiar with the word, but lots of people have not heard of phishing scams.
Wisconsin’s top cop is trying to get the word out, reminding people to be aware of phishing (fishing) scams. Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen explains, cyber criminals send potential victims emails hoping to convince the recipients to click on a link, where the unsuspecting consumer will be redirected to a fake website.
“Basically what they’re asking for is for people to give up their social security number or other information — credit card numbers — that is going to permit them (scammer) to adopt their (consumer) identity and somehow fraudulently deprive them of some of their resources.”
Van Hollen warns, Internet scammers disguise their emails as legitimate memos from well-known retailers, banks, credit card companies and government agencies, making it difficult to tell the difference from the real thing. Van Hollen says there are many folks who are not even aware of phishing scams.
“And as we make them more aware, and more aware of what they can do to protect themselves we can not only protect them but prevent criminality and save resources down the road as well.”
Legitimate businesses, banks and government agencies will never ask consumers to send personal, account and financial information via e-mail.