Phishing is a type of attack carried out in order to steal information or money. Phishing attacks can occur through email, phone calls, texts, instant messaging, or social media. Attackers are after your personal information: usernames, passwords, credit card information, Social Security numbers. However, they are also after intellectual property, research data, and institutional information. Phishing scams can have several goals, including:
We encourage the UC Berkeley community to take an active role in protecting themselves against phishing attacks. Use our helpful tips in our Fight the Phish campaign to recognize and report phishing attacks.
The first rule to remember is to never give out any personal information in an email. No institution, bank or otherwise, will ever ask for this information via email. It may not always be easy to tell whether an email or website is legitimate and phishing emails are using social engineering tactics to make create sophisticated scams.
No. Phishing attacks can also occur through phone calls, texts, instant messaging, or malware on your computer which can track how you use your computer and send valuable information to identity thieves. It is important to be vigilant at all times and remain suspicious of sources that ask for your credentials and other personal information.