Vishing (Voice Phishing)
Have you ever received a phone call asking for your bank details? Have you ever received any SMS from a bank stating that “Your bank XYZ doesn’t ask for any kind of personal details over phone calls. Stay safe of fraudsters.”?
Imagine a scenario where you receive a phone call saying that your bank account has been compromised or there is something wrong with your credit card. Immediately after that, an SMS pops up instructing to call a specific telephone number. And when you make a call, they ask you to enter your bank account details/credit card information to look into the matter. This is where Vishing comes into picture.
Vishing is a combined form of “Voice + Phishing”. Most of the times a war dialer is used or an automated recording is being played over the call but the active involvement of human operators have also been reported. It uses “Caller ID Spoofing“ to convince the victim that the call is from a legitimate source. It also relies upon the techniques of “Social Engineering“ to manipulate the victim so that he/she ends up providing the confidential data. This confidential information obtained from the victim is then used for Identity Theft. And the Identity fraud can cause more harm than one can think of.
Common types of Vishing:
- Fake computer tech support asking to remotely access the PC to fix certain problem.
- Phishing under the mask of government agencies or banks.
- Fake cash winning information asking for the credit card details.
- Fake contest/prize winning.
Although, banks and other organisations try to send us SMS alerts stating to stay safe of fraudsters. But unfortunately, it’s difficult to recover the confidential data once it gets compromised. So, we should try to avoid it by taking some preventive measures.
- Never ever provide any confidential data over phone or SMS.
- Do not call the number provided in any SMS. Instead, try to directly contact the concerned legitimate source from which it appears to have come.
- Think twice before receiving an unknown call.
This era of the Internet has made things easy but at the same time, it has left us with a wide range of security threats. Spread awareness among your known ones. Perhaps, this is the best thing we can do to mark us safe in this flood of threats. Stay safe.