How Does Spoofing Differ from Phishing and Spam
Phishing The act of sending an email that falsely claims to be from a legitimate organization. The phishing email combines a threat or request for information: an account will close, a balance is due, or information is missing from an account. The email will ask the recipient to supply confidential information, such as bank account details, PINs, or passwords; the website owners then use these details to conduct fraud.
Since all spoofed email messages are unsolicited, they are spam. The difference between regular spam and spoofed email messages is that common spammers don’t edit mail headers to appear as if their messages were coming from someone else.
Sure, they sometimes purposefully use addresses almost indistinguishable from mail addresses of legitimate organizations, but they don’t edit them. That said, spammers and spoofers readily share email accounts, which is why one of the most effective ways to stop email spoofing is to stay away from shady websites that ask visitors to enter their addresses.
Okay, but what about phishing (fishing)? Well, phishing and spoofing are both fraudulent attempts to trick someone into believing that the message they’ve received is from a reputable sender, but phishing takes things a step further.
The ultimate goal of phishers is to induce individuals to reveal personal information, such as passwords and credit card numbers, to use this personal information for their gain. To achieve this goal, they sometimes spoof an email by editing its headers using specialized software that makes it possible to create spoof emails without much effort, but spoofing is just one of several techniques they can use.
The good news is that learning how to spot and stop spoof emails also equips you with the skills and knowledge you need to prevent phishing and spam emails.
Should you receive an email with this type of request, do not click on the link provided. Instead, go to the site you usually use and sign in there and check for issues.
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