Email fraud (“Phishing”) involves fraud perpetrators making contact by email and can take a number of forms. The email may appear to be from a reputable company however when one clicks on the email or attachment or link within the email, malicious software (malware) is downloaded onto the PC or other device allowing the fraud perpetrator to track online activity and identify personal or financial information for fraudulent purposes. Both individuals and companies can be victims of this type of crime.
In other cases, the fraud perpetrator uses temptation as a means to extract money from you by pretending that you have won or inherited a large sum of money to convince you to provide personal or banking details or to transfer money.
“Spear phishing” is a variation of phishing. With phishing, fraud perpetrators might send a single, mass email to thousands of people. Spear phishing attacks are customized and sent to a single person at a time. The spear phishing email usually contains personal information such as your name or some disarming fact about your employment. A spear phishing email usually includes a link leading to a fake web site that requests personal information. The phone email may contain a downloadable file. They often appear to come from an employer or another seemingly legitimate source. But the file contains malware, and once downloaded to your computer, collects your personal information and transmits it to the fraud perpetrator.