What is vishing and how does it work?
Do you know what the term vishing refers to? If you still do not know, continue reading to find out how one of the most widespread criminal practices in the telephone field works.
What is vishing?
The term "vishing" comes from the mixture between the words "voice" and "phishing". It consists of a technique used by hackers or other criminals to trick their victims over the phone and make them reveal confidential information. The objective of this practice is to obtain data normally of a personal or financial nature such as credit cards, bank accounts, and even passwords. It is, then, a practice categorized as "identity theft".
Techniques used in vishing
The criminals who carry out this practice usually use a series of techniques so that the victims reveal their identity or data easily. Among the most common are:
- Urgency: Victims are made to believe that their money or assets are in danger if they do not act quickly.
- Business environment: you can hear background sounds as if the scammer is in an office or call centre so it automatically gives you more credibility. Criminals are able to digitally mount on the call these sounds.
- Correct information: Scammers have your name, address, phone number or even bank information they get from other places, and they use it to obtain other extra information.
- Telephone assemblies: Normally they use programs to act as if the call came from another site. This technique of changing phone numbers is called "spoofing" and there are programs like SpoofCard or free applications like Burner that allow you to do it easily. The "spoofing" in certain cases is legal, to protect against SPAM or to protect privacy, but in the vast majority is considered an illegal technique.
How to protect against vishing
Although we can all be victims of this threat, there are certain preventions we can take to minimize the risk:
- Never give personal information: Although it may seem logical, often the scammers sound very convincing. To differentiate them you have to know that legitimate companies will never ask for your identity card, PIN numbers or credit cards or social security numbers.
- Never call the number that appears on the caller ID to the number you have been given. Check first if the number is legitimate. To do this, you can use the search on the Internet where other users must surely post opinions about the phone number.
- When you receive a suspicious call simply hang up or do not answer. As in the previous point, do not return the call, in case you have made a missed call.
It is mainly about making use of common sense and not acting in cases of urgency.