Since the internet becomes so popular all around the world, an era of the so called cyber criminals was also born and until now it continue to mess on someone's online activities. In fact as individuals, banks, private establishments and government institutions relying more often and doing business via the internet, cyber criminals also grows its numbers.And inspite strict measures in certain countries to go after these criminals, still its not enough to stop these people from committing such crime. One cyber crime I would like to discuss in particular is called Phishing(in case you dont know).
Phishing is the act of sending an e-mail to a user falsely claiming to be an established legitimate enterprise in an attempt to scam the user into surrendering private information that will be used for identity theft. The e-mail directs the user to visit a Web site where they are asked to update personal information, such as passwords and credit card, social security, and bank account numbers, that the legitimate organization already has. The Web site, however, is bogus and set up only to steal the user’s information.
One example of this is my own experience, at one time I received an email from the admin of Yahoo(as to what I know that time) saying that congratulations you are one of those who win on our daily raffle worth $500 to claim the price please click on the link, if you still don't know what is phishing all about, you will really say that's the email is genuine and and you will jump to click on the link.After clicking the link it opens a site that resembles just like yahoo, and it will instruct you to further click on the link to claim you price via an e-currency company(if you have one, otherwise you will be obliged to open an account) and the last part just about you are finish transferring the $500, another message pops-up saying that you are not yet a premium member of Yahoo games and you have to register in order to claim your price, the cost is just a little over $8 so you will not suspect thats its a hoax, you will pay the said subcription price and found out later that no $500 goes to your account, and its just a work of a phisher but I thank God I only lost 8$. Phishers can steal password and user name to a site that you log-in regularly even in a Friendster or Yahoo mail account. Lots of E-bay members was also victimized by these phishers.
If you received an email, requiring you to upgrade your password, user name or something dont act on it, call or email the involve company to verify if it comes from them.Normally legitimate businesses will not let there members upgrade vital information via an email link, especially if password and user name are involve. You can also verify the given link on a domain verification site like http://www.whois.sc/ , in most cases it will give you the details of the particular link.
In IE7 there is already anti phishing features, while Opera and Firefox will warn you if the site you are about to open is not safe or bogus.