Cybersecurity-related problems are a constant concern for all organizations, including high net-worth individuals. How can you protect yourself from spoofing and phishing? Can insurance help?
What is spoofing?
Spoofing occurs when someone disguises an email address, sender name, phone number, or website URL—often just by changing one letter, symbol, or number—to convince you that you are interacting with a trusted source.
For example, you might receive an email that looks like it’s from your boss, a company you’ve done business with, or even from someone in your family—but it actually isn’t.
Criminals count on being able to manipulate you into believing that these spoofed communications are real, which can lead you to download malicious software, send money, or disclose personal, financial, or other sensitive information.
What is phishing?
Phishing schemes often use spoofing techniques to lure you in and get you to take the bait. These scams are designed to trick you into giving information to criminals that they shouldn’t have access to.
In a phishing scam, you might receive an email that appears to be from a legitimate business and is asking you to update or verify your personal information by replying to the email or visiting a website. The web address might look similar to one you’ve used before. The email may be convincing enough to get you to take the action requested.
But once you click on that link, you’re sent to a spoofed website that might look nearly identical to the real thing—like your bank or credit card site—and asked to enter sensitive information like passwords, credit card numbers, banking PINs, etc. These fake websites are used solely to steal your information.
Phishing has evolved and now has several variations that use similar techniques:
- Vishing scams happen over the phone, voice email, or VoIP (voice over Internet Protocol) calls.
- Smishing scams happen through SMS (text) messages.
- Pharming scams happen when malicious code is installed on your computer to redirect you to fake websites.
Phishing and spoofing are key parts of business email compromise scams. You need to report all cybersecurity incidents and protect yourself and your business.
How to report
To report phishing and spoofing attempts—or to report that you’ve been a victim—file a complaint with the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3).
How cybersecurity insurance can help
Cybersecurity insurance is designed to mitigate losses from a variety of cyber incidents, including data breaches, business interruption, and network damage. A robust cybersecurity insurance market could help reduce the number of successful cyber-attacks by: (1) promoting the adoption of preventative measures in return for more coverage; and (2) encouraging the implementation of best practices by basing premiums on an insured’s level of self-protection. Please contact CMR & Associates for help in determining the best cybersecurity coverage for businesses and high net-worth individuals.
About CMR & Associates + PolicySmart™
CMR & Associates’ risk management consultants provide independent retirement and insurance advice by reviewing your current plans to improve coverage and reduce cost. Through CMR’s proprietary database – The CMR Database® (comprised of some 13,000 brokers and specialists globally), we maximize access to the insurance and retirement industry for greater options that will translate to better coverage and lower cost.
Please email CMR & Associates or call 877-447-4301 or 212-447-4300 for more information.