May 13, 2016, by Lucy Burrow

Don’t get hooked by Phishers

There has been a lot of press focus recently on online fraud and cyber security.

Information Services spend a lot of time cleaning up after registered University users (staff and students) have responded to phishing emails and divulged their University username and password. Last week alone 12 UoN people responded to phishing emails. As Lucas says in his article, ‘All the locksmiths in the world won’t protect people who are careless with their keys’.

All organisations are vulnerable to this but Universities are attractive because of the research we do, the data we have and the high profile of many of our staff. Whilst there are lots of things Information Services can do and already do – we need all our registered users to behave sensibly and be aware.

What is phishing?

A phishing email is designed to looks like a genuine email from the University, your bank or another institution usually asking for passwords or financial details. Phishing emails are particularly dangerous because they often look like the real thing. These emails often use the logos and styling to lend as much credibility as possible to the scam.

Why do criminals bother with phishing?

We are all at risk. Even the most basic email account can be useful to a criminal. They can use it to send messages that will defraud your colleagues, friends and family. They may also target extracting attractive data which they can use to facilitate other crime.

What can I do protect myself and the University?

Be vigilant and exercise a sensible level of suspicion.We are all busy people but we must behave sensibly and be aware of our actions. We wouldn’t hand our bank card and pin number or house keys over to a stranger, so please be aware and encourage colleagues and students to be also.

And remember, the University will NEVER ask you to respond to an email asking for your username and password or bank details. Please see our further guidance here.

Posted in Cyber Securityphishing