Internet: Phishing and spam mails

e-mail: Phishing and spam

In phishing users receive faked e-mail messages that look and read very much like those from banks or business partners. If you click on a link in an e-mail message of this kind, you are routed to faked websites where you are supposed to reveal confidential information like logins, PINs and TANs for your online banking access. The initiators of these mails are thus "fishing" for your sensitive data and in this way attempting to access your bank account, for instance. To avoid becoming the victim of such e-mail messages, not to mention tedious spam, be careful about where you enter your e-mail address in the web.

"Cross-site scripting" and "man-in-the-middle" attacks

Attacks by manipulated websites (cross-site scripting) can also play data into the wrong hands: For instance, when hidden malicious code is embedded in a website. In man-in-the-middle attacks, a third party insinuates himself between the sender and the recipient of sensitive data transmissions, so that he can read or even manipulate the data.

Minimizing the risk of data theft

There is no complete protection for the scenarios described, but the following rules of conduct can reduce the risk of such attacks: No serious bank will ever request confidential data from its customers by e-mail. If you receive such a request, contact your bank or other business partners. Do the same if you fear that you have already been the victim of a phishing attack.

Encrypted Internet connections with "https"

Enter web addresses in the browser yourself or use your bookmarks. Do not click on links contained in e-mail messages. In general, you should not react to e-mail messages that ask you to enter personal passwords or other sensitive data. When logging into sensitive accounts, make sure that the connection is secured using "SSL" encryption – this is the case if the address displayed in the browser window starts with "https". For more protection, make sure to always install the latest updates on your FRITZ!Box, use the password protection on the FRITZ!Box user interface, and keep your virus scanner up to date.