Social Engineering and Phishing: Safeguarding Against Online Scams

In a world that is dominated by technology, where advancements take place every single day, individuals must be well-informed about the tactics used to steal one’s personal data. Social engineering is one such popular tactic used by cybercriminals. It involves sending some form of communication that invokes emotions like fear or urgency that manipulates the human psyche and tricks the individual into disclosing personal or sensitive information. One of the common types of social engineering is phishing.

Understanding the Tactics: How Social Engineering Exploits Human Behavior

What makes social engineering different from conventional hacking methods is that it does not use technical weaknesses, but exploits human nature and psychology. This makes its detection a tough job. Cybercriminals use different strategies such as mimicking trusted people or instilling fear to trick their victims into clicking unknown lies or files and revealing confidential information.

Recognising Phishing Attacks: Common Techniques and Red Flags

To identify a potential phishing attack, one must be aware of some of the common techniques and red flags listed below:

1. Urgent action emails: This is the most common technique used in phishing emails. Emails that indicate an emergency and do not give time to the recipient to assess it are a red flag.

2. Suspicious files: A .exe file is the most common file found in phishing emails. Once clicked, programs get installed on the recipient’s device. A new entry in this area is the .html attachment, which leads to an HTML page, where the recipient is requested to enter their username and password.

3. Spelling errors: Question the genuineness of any email that has spelling and grammar errors. For instance, the usage of “acounts” instead of “accounts”.

4. Generic salutations: Phishing emails either have a generic saturation or none. They do not address the recipient by their name.

5. Inconsistent email addresses and domain names: If the email address does not match the affiliated company, it is a phishing attack.

6. Irresistible offers: A very evident red flag is an email on winning gift cards, gadgets, or on claiming bonus credit/debit card points.

7. Direct request: Emails directly requesting financial or personal data is a phishing scam.

Federal Bank has a Learning Centre dedicated to educating people on email security and how they can counter phishing attacks. One can get all the information they need and stay updated by visiting their Learning Centre .

Strengthening Cyber Defences: Best Practices and Tools to Counter Online Scams

Listed below are some of the best practices and tools that individuals can use to counter phishing attacks and scams:

1. Social Media and Phishing: Protecting Your Online Presence

Social media platforms must be used with caution. Individuals must ensure they do not share private information on social media. One must refrain from befriending unknown people or responding to such messages, as this is a popular platform for cybercriminals to launch their attacks.

2. Education and Training: Empowering Users to Defend Against Social Engineering

Individuals must stay updated on the different types of cyber attacks. They must participate in various security awareness programs and educate themselves on cybersecurity.

3. Email Security: Safeguarding Against Phishing Emails

Individuals must invest and make the best use of various threat detection tools available like firewalls or anti-malware software. Additionally, they can boost the security of their accounts by using strong and different passwords for every account. Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) adds an extra layer of security to the account. Furthermore, it is crucial to update the security software and patches at regular intervals to protect one’s devices.


Individuals can ensure the safety of their sensitive data by having a proactive approach and educating themselves on cyber security and cyber-attacks. By adopting the best practices and tools, they can effectively tackle cyber scams. Visit Federal Bank’s Blog to stay updated on various aspects of finance.