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Week 1: Phishing Awareness and Prevention

Why do you receive these emails?

  • Attackers send these emails, generally to a large number of recipients, to collect credentials.  Occasionally, attackers will craft very specific, targeted messages unique to the recipient.  This is referred to as "spear-phishing."
  • Attackers can use these credentials for several reasons, depending on what credentials they collect:
    • Email account credentials are collected so that attackers can use your email address to send phishing messages, sometimes to people you have previously communicated with
    • Financial account credentials are used to perpetrate financial fraud and/or steal money
    • Campus or other business/work related credentials are most often collected to attempt to steal intellectual property, or to infiltrate the organization

What can you do to help?

  • Send the email to abuse@csusm.edu, however, forwarding the email is not sufficient! Obtaining a copy of the original email allows us to analyze various things about the message, like what route the message took, who actually sent it, etc.
  • To send the message as an attachment:
    • Open your Outlook email client
    • Select the message in your messages list
    • In the top menu on the “Home” tab, click “More” in the "Respond" section
    • In the drop-down menu select “Forward as Attachment”

You can view recent confirmed phishing messages by clicking here.