Phishing : Did you receive the bait?
By Onkar Singh Shekhawat
Phishing is anew word in internet parlance that means receiving mail that tries to compel you divulge your personal information to an unknown sender of the e-mail.
You may have received mails with the subject ‘treat it most urgent’. Inside you find a person giving his identity as a manager of some African Bank or international agency having access to some unclaimed funds in the Bank showing willingness to transfer you the same. The sender would give fake personal address and even a phone number. In turn, you are promised as much as 30% of few million dollars as transaction fee and balance is to be remitted to the person. How good!
Or it may be a mail informing you ‘huge funds transferred in your bank/credit card account-please confirm your account number and password to access’. You are given a link that leads to a genuine looking bank website. If you fill the account number and password, the site closes with a ‘thank you’ note. You may not get the million dollar but end up losing your money.
These mails are intelligently structured and even persist with subsequent mails giving finer details of the structure, such as news link of family died in plane crash to BBC site or some other source to prove that story of unclaimed funds sounds credible. These mails are sent to hundreds and few are lured into disclosing their personal information like address, phone number etc. that can be used to create fake accounts in your name or retrieve information from your existing ID.
Phishing is the internet version of phreaking. Phreaking was tricking a person to divulge personal detail which was used to get access to phone number to make expensive international calls from your account. So refuse to take the bait thrown by internet thugs.