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Scotland Setting Sail Scam

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With Scotland Setting Sail, away from the United kingdom tonight or Friday morning. The results of the Referendum will be a popular and the risk of scammers trying to access your inner sanctum or mobile phone and email system. Get Safe Online has published a warning telling computer users to be aware of fake early result messages. In response to the warning, Mark Sparshott, EMEA Director at Proofpoint, explains why widespread interest events generate an increase in email spam and what computer-users should be most aware of:

Phishing emails based on Topical and Breaking News Stories are consistently in the Top 10 most powerful phishing lures used by cybercriminals to get people to click links leading to malicious websites that can take control of their PCs or mobile devices. 

Pick any event, from one-offs like The Referendum to annual favourites like the UK Tax Returns, and cybercriminals will send millions of phishing emails in the run up to it. Pick any major news story from a terrorist incident to a global brand being breached and cybercriminals will send millions of phishing emails immediately after it. 

Phishing emails used to be relatively low risk as most business and consumer mailboxes were adequately protected by anti-spam and anti-virus solutions. However today's phishing emails are deadly because the cybercriminals' techniques have evolved faster than most security solutions.  As such Proofpoint's advises businesses is to audit the performance of their current email & web solutions to assess the risk and advises consumers to think before you click on links to news stories and consider opening a browser and searching for the story rather than clicking the link in the email.