A laptop displays a phishing scam warning for a suspicious email.

What Happens If Your Employee Falls For a Phishing Scam

A phishing scam is a type of cybersecurity attack where unsuspecting individuals unknowingly divulge sensitive information such as bank and credit card details, Personal Identification Numbers codes, and passwords to fraudsters. Fraudsters are able to obtain said information by convincing their victims that they are legitimate entities through social engineering. In a recent article, our cybersecurity solutions expert discussed the signs of a phishing attack so that your employees can easily recognize one and not fall for it. In this article, our cybersecurity company resident expert will discuss what to do if you or one of your employees falls for a phishing scam.

Falling Victim to a Phishing Scam 

Terrible grammar, sloppy graphics, and suspiciously named links are markers of a phishing scam. However, scammers are innovating and improving on the believability of their phishing scams by using better syntax, logos, and email addresses (sometimes just adding a dot to a legitimate address, which is quite hard to distinguish from a legitimate one). This in conjunction with tested social engineering techniques can dupe an employee that is temporarily distracted, under stress, or tired. The first and most crucial step in minimizing the damage is to acknowledge your mistake and inform your superiors and the head of IT immediately.

Cybersecurity Solutions First Aid

Your company IT solutions head’s advice will vary depending on the sensitive data obtained or the type of breach. If the employee unknowingly downloaded a rogue program then the computer must be disconnected from the internet and the office’s network and scanned for viruses and unverified programs. If the scammers acquired email credentials then the employee will be advised to recover the email (if it was accessed) and change the password. It would also be sensible to change the password of other accounts that share login details and/or passwords with the compromised account. If the breach involves banking details then the employee must immediately contact his bank and have his account temporarily frozen.

Monitoring the Situation and Preventing Phishing Scams

Employees should be vigilant for suspicious activities involving their computers and/or bank accounts following the breach as these may not present immediately. The IT solutions our company offered above are just initial remedies your employees can undertake should they fall for a phishing scam. However, these remedies would not suffice for security breaches that were discovered late or rogue programs that have infected multiple computers. As is true with most cases, prevention is better than cure.

Our IT Company Can Help You Protect Your Business

Does your human resource training involve recognition of phishing scams? Do you have a protocol in place to secure your systems in case of a breach? Our cybersecurity company, BHT solutions is a Houston-based IT company with satisfied clients all over the country. Call us now to schedule an appointment. Leave your cybersecurity worries to us so you can focus on your business. 

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