You’re probably familiar with the old cybersecurity mantra: never download suspicious email attachments. But what makes an email attachment suspicious, exactly? Here we discuss this topic that takes on greater importance with each passing day as cybercrime becomes more prevalent and sophisticated.
How To Recognize a Suspicious Email Attachment?
An attachment is a document sent along with an email message. You can attach any type of file to an email, including text files, video files, spreadsheets, and photos.
Needless to say, attachments are a useful feature of emails. Problem is, attachments are one of the methods hackers use more often to get unsuspecting victims to download malicious software.
Here are some of the red flags that indicate that you are probably dealing with a suspicious email attachment:
- You don’t know the sender, or the email address is nonsensical
- The senders’ email address is designed to confuse (for example, if your bank’s email address is firstname.lastname@example.org cybercriminals use email@example.com)
- The email that contains the attachment is riddled with typos
- The content of the email doesn’t make sense
- The file extension is uncommon (some of the extensions favored by hackers include .reg, .bat, .jar, an .msi
How To Protect Yourself Against Suspicious Email Attachments?
Hackers are cunning, but you can keep them at bay by implementing some basic cybersecurity hygiene practices:
- Listen to your instincts: if something feels off about an attachment, don’t open it
- Keep your antivirus up to date
- If your email account has an option to automatically download attachments, turn it off
- Use the anti-spam features on your email
- Avoid public Wi-Fi networks as much as
More Tips and Ideas
At the ONE Inland Empire Chamber of Commerce, we are always looking for ideas that help foster the growth of your business. Here are some previous posts to help you do just that:
- How to use social media to advance your career
- Cybersecurity basics for small businesses
- 3 Simple ways to protect yourself against identity theft
- Common grammar mistakes to avoid in your business emails
Interested in learning more about the ONE Inland Empire Chamber of Commerce? Contact us today by email (firstname.lastname@example.org), telephone (951-280-3902), or social media. We look forward to hearing from you!