Look out for 'spear-phishing' this tax return season

Look out for 'spear-phishing' this tax return season

With the tax return season around the corner, cybercriminals are getting ready to use sophisticated tactics to steal information!


One form of cybercrime to look out for this tax return season is 'spear-phishing'.

'Spear-phishing' is a form of cyberattack where criminals send personalised emails to victims in the hopes of stealing information. It is more difficult to detect than other forms of phishing because the emails are personalised to appear as if they were sent by someone the victim knows.

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Another popular cyberattack criminals use is the 'spray and pray' phishing tactic. This is when cybercriminals send thousands of emails to different people in the hopes that at least one person will fall victim to the attack.

According to Aamir Lakhani, a global security strategist and researcher at Fortinet: “Tax return time is open season for cybercrime." He also warns that it's likely to be worse this year as many people are still working from home on various devices connected to unsecured networks. 

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Fortunately, there are steps to avoid falling victim to a social engineering scam. Lakhani shared the following tips:

  • Look for grammatical issues and typos
  • Be sceptical
  • Don’t share personal information
  • Warn family and friends who may be vulnerable to attacks
  • Use technology to help prevent attacks

Learn more about 'spear-phishing' here:

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