Vishing is another term for voice phishing, and it is the fraudulent practice of making phone calls or leaving voice messages impersonating reputable companies to convince individuals to reveal personal information, such as bank details and credit card numbers.
Audio: Listen to this article.
As marketing, PR, and communications professionals, your contact information and your company’s contact information is available to everyone. This is so current and potential clientele can contact you for information and services. However, having your contact information available means someone can use that number for vishing. Even if the “company” that calls you seems legit, don’t give it any personal information, like a credit card number, if there’s no real reason for them to have it; if you win an award and the caller asks for a credit card number, then it probably isn’t a real award.
We are a trusted public relations advisor to cybersecurity companies and organizations seeking helpful expert guidance on corporate communication before, during, and after a cyber attack. You can follow these two ways to protect your personal and company information against vishing: Don’t share personal or company information with an unfamiliar source, and report suspicious calls or messages.
Two Ways to Protect Yourself from Vishing:
- Don’t share personal or company information with untrusted sources.
If a source is unknown or unfamiliar to you, then you shouldn’t provide them with any personal or company information. When a source like that asks for a credit card number or private company information, you should automatically become suspicious, and you should never provide them with this information until you confirm their identity and you know they actually need the information they asked for.
- Report suspicious calls or messages to security.
Reporting any of these suspicious calls and messages is the first step in stopping them from tricking anyone else from your company or other companies into providing information.
This post about vishing is number six in a series of eight posts on cybersecurity for strategic communications professionals. Click to view the previous post "What PR pros need to know about removable media and cybersecurity awareness" or the next post "What PR pros need to know about internet downloads and cyber security awareness" in the series.