Attackers like to use real world events when they can. Public interests can help them determine what people are more likely to click on, making their attacks more successful. Here are a few ways the news can be used against you:
• Phishing Emails: can contain content that takes advantage of what people are talking about. From pop culture to politics, Phishing email content that people find interesting at the time is more likely to succeed. They can also be timed appropriately, for example, Phishing emails about Benefits or Open Enrollment are going around right now.
• Googling: Attackers can use Google or other search engine results to their advantage. Anytime there is a major news story, hackers attempt to poison the search results to make their malicious page show up near the top of the list. Anytime there is big news going on, be careful of just Googling the term and clicking the top links without checking where they go.
• Phone Scams: yes, they are also still out there mainly because they are effective. These can often make use of things people are talking about, or confused about, such as the new Healthcare law or taxes.
Just be aware of these tactics and know that whenever news breaks, the attackers are jumping on the opportunity to target curious users.
These tips are provided by Iowa State Bank in partnership with 10-D Security. If you have specific questions, contact your local banker at Iowa State Bank. Iowa State Bank is an Equal Opportunity Lender. Member FDIC.