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The Art of Scepticism In Email Security

June 01, 2023

Emails are frequently used by cybercriminals to launch phishing attacks, which can lead to identity theft, financial loss, and other serious consequences. Most people may think that having antivirus software alone is enough to protect against such attacks, but this is a common misconception.

While antivirus software can certainly be helpful in detecting and removing certain types of malware, it is not always effective in detecting or preventing phishing attacks, which can be more subtle and rely on social engineering tactics rather than malicious code. Moreover, cybercriminals are constantly developing new and more sophisticated methods of attack. That said, antivirus software may not always be quick enough to detect and deter new types of attack.

Hence, rather than solely relying on antivirus or security tools to determine the safety of received emails, it is crucial for individuals to approach them with a healthy dose of scepticism. 

What is scepticism?

To be sceptical means to have doubt or uncertainty, until sufficient evidence is available to support or refute a claim.

Here are some tips on how to be sceptical towards a received email:

  • Check the sender’s email address: The first step in being sceptical of a received email is to check the sender’s email address. Is it from a legitimate source? Is the domain name consistent with the supposed sender? If the email is from an unknown source or has a strange domain name, it may be a sign that the email is not legitimate.
  • Look for spelling and grammatical errors: Legitimate emails from reputable sources are usually well written, free of errors and typos. If the email is full of spelling and grammatical errors, it may be a sign that the email is fraudulent.
  • Don’t click on links or download attachments: Emails may contain links or attachments that could potentially harm your computer or steal your personal information. Don’t click on links or download attachments unless you are absolutely certain that the email is legitimate.
  • Be wary of urgent or threatening language: Scammers may use urgent or threatening language in their emails to try to convince you to take immediate action. Be sceptical of any email that tries to pressure you into taking a quick or urgent action.
  • Verify the information independently: If an email contains information that seems important, try to verify it independently before taking any action. You can use search engines or contact the supposed sender directly to verify the information.

By being sceptical towards a received email, you can protect yourself from potential scams and phishing attempts. Always remember to approach emails with caution and verify the information before taking any action.