Phishing: Why should you be aware of the dangers?

There are a number of security breaches that e-merchants have to duck, dodge and dive given the extensive opportunities that

There are a number of security breaches that e-merchants have to duck, dodge and dive given the extensive opportunities that the internet provides for cyber-crime. It is important to note, at this point, that PCI compliance is absolutely vital for merchants – not just because you might get into trouble if you are caught without the required safety precautions on your systems, but because the recommendations of PCI are vital for keeping the identities, contact details and account details of your consumers out of harm’s way.

Phishing is an appropriate term given to a seemingly innocent action that leaves your customers deep fried and ready for the eating. Fraudsters use social engineering to steal personal data of customers: they send emails in the pretense of legitimate businesses and then lure customers to fake websites where they are manipulated into entering their account details. Another variation of phishing is when a screen scraper or recorder is put into computer and other attacks occur when data is redirected to another network (from where it is can be viewed and recorded), without you ever knowing… the rest, as they say, is history.

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Consider the following in your business practices:

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* Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome and other such web browsers check websites and protect against circulated blacklists for suspicious sites.

* Educate your employees on the dangers of phishing and that all unfamiliar attachments that they suspect as possible phishing attempts should be disposed of immediately. By opening attachments form unknown senders, the company’s system and customer details are made vulnerable and security breaches; more likely.

* Anti-fraud service providers will be able to assist you with various other preventative measures like routers, which filter suspicious emails and URLs on a network level, so that employees do not land on suspicious websites.

* Speak to your anti-fraud service provider and check with a PCI consultant to make sure that all precautions have been taken.

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