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Reviewing the different forms of phishing

Phishing typically ranks among the most common forms of internet crimes. Yet the general definition of a phishing scheme is often so vague that it can be difficult identifying cases where it has actually happened. Indeed, many come to our team here at Ron Cordova Attorney at Law after having been accused of phishing unaware that they have been doing anything wrong. If someone in Irvine has accused you of running a phishing scam, knowing what types of phishing scams have been identified can help you answer those accusations. 

In general, phishing has been defined as attempts to steal someone's personal information online by baiting with what appears to be legitimate information (such as posing as a representative of an established company or a trusted brand). According to the Infosec Institute, specific forms of phishing include: 

  • Vishing: Using Voice over IP to manipulate caller IDs to deceive intended victims 
  • SMiSHing: Sending out mass texts soliciting information
  • W2 phishing: Posing as a company's representative asking to collect W2's from employees
  • Pharming: Using Domain Name System cache poisoning to direct intended victims a malicious website
  • Ransomware phishing: Holding a computer hostage by infecting it with malware disseminated through emails made to look legitimate
  • Dropbox and Google Docs phishing: Gaining access to personal information by inviting intended victims to log into a website using their Dropbox or Google Docs accounts

There are also types of phishing meant to play on the term's connotation. Spear phishing occurs if you use information posted by an intended victim on social media to create content that invites them to share information. Passing yourself off as a high-level employee of a business to access its employee's emails is called whale phishing. You can learn more about defending yourself against phishing charges by continuing to explore our site. 

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