Going to Click a Link in That Email? Better Think Twice

Think Twice is a campaign launched by Cifas, aligned with various financial institutions, to help educate and urge individuals to protect their sensitive information and not become fraud victims. The campaign endeavors to hook viewers on their message with this creative “Think Twice Before You Act” video, which likens fraudsters to sharks and other predators in the sea searching for easy prey.

The campaign urges everyone to do exactly as it says: think twice. We are presented with opportunities every day to click here, respond to an email or phone call there … and Cifas (a UK organization formerly known as the Credit Industry Fraud Avoidance Service) recommends taking that extra moment to think things through:

  • Handing over security passwords? Think twice.
  • Providing account details? Think twice.
  • Clicking on an email link? Think twice.

CRI Group knows the importance of public awareness campaigns to help stem the tide of fraud. It is only through education that people will have the knowledge to help themselves be better protected by those whose sole purpose is to separate individuals from their hard-earned money, by any means necessary.

That’s why we support efforts like Think Twice, and similar campaigns like International Fraud Awareness Week, International Anti-Corruption Day and Canada's Fraud Prevention Month, among others. Cifas notes that in the UK alone, millions are defrauded through malicious emails, texts, phone calls and other means employed by con artists to get access to your secure information.

Think Twice outlines a fraudster’s favorite ways to try and scam you:

Email: if in doubt, don’t click on links or use contact details in the email. Links can install malware or direct you to a spoof site to collect your details. Contact details can be fake and put you in touch with the fraudster! Always visit websites independently.
Landline phone calls: fraudsters can gather personal information about you – often using social media – and then contact you pretending to be your bank or other trusted organisation. If they ask you to put the phone down and call back to check the call is genuine, wait at least 10 minutes or use another phone – they will keep the line open.
Text message: links in texts can install malware or viruses on your phone and give criminals access to your data – delete if in doubt. Remember fake messages can be made to look like they come from existing contacts or a trusted organization.
Mobile phone call: Fraudsters can spoof numbers so it looks like they’re calling from a trusted organization. Always call back independently, following the rules above.
Post/mail: Keep your post secure – especially in communal areas – to avoid fraudsters getting their hands on your mail and personal details. If you get post from an organization that you’re suspicious of, always call them using known and trusted details – like emails, the contact details and web addresses provided can be fake.  

It’s a new year, and fraudsters’ methods are only becoming more sophisticated and persistent. Make a commitment to better protect yourself from fraud and corruption. With every communication you receive, take the time to Think Twice. It could save you a lot of stress and heartache down the road. So #SaveGelly, and GetSafeOnline.