Heritage InsuranceGreg discusses telltale signs of phishing scams in this episode of Ask The Expert. 800 CHAB radio presents Ask the Expert with Greg Marcyniuk of Heritage Insurance located in Moose Jaw.

Here's a full transcript of the episode:

Rob Carnie: Featuring Greg Marcyniuk from Heritage Insurance in downtown Moose Jaw. Greg, today we're going phishing. That is P-H-I-S-H-I-N-G, phishing, and it can be very dangerous when we get people phishing on our emails, sir.

Greg Marcyniuk: That's correct, Rob. Just a quick definition of what phishing is. Basically what it is, is it's an individual trying to attempt to get all of your sensitive information — such as usernames, passwords, credit cards, details. And it's often used by disguising entity on the electronic communications coming from a legitimate source such as a bank or CRA. So, they are out there and you have to be so aware of these things.

So, I've just got six tips for, first of all, how to spot a phishing email. And first and foremost, a real company does not typically request sensitive information in an email. What they'll do — and I've actually witnessed a hacker do this myself — where they will send an email blast saying that, "We need to verify your information." No legitimate company actually asks for that.

Secondly, a real company knows who you are. They're not going to just come out with generic greetings. And you've got to be very careful though, however, because some of these companies and cyber criminals are getting smarter. So, you have to be very aware of it. Companies send emails typically from their own domain. Now, if you want to just check on the email address, don't click on the top. If you just drag your mouse up to the top, and you can see whether or not it's actually came from a real domain.

The other thing that's very scary is www.thedomainname, is typically what you'll see up there. If you see www and no dot, then be aware of that. A real company does not send image-only email, so most phishing emails will send out things that just show an actual image. Do not click on that image, because you click on that image, you're sunk. They just caught you.

Rob: And they're good because they send out — they steal logos essentially, right?

Greg: That's correct, Rob. So, you just have to be very wary of it. And again, a real company does not randomly email attachments. I have a rule within the office. Anyone that has an attachment to an email, do not open it. And if you ever have any question about it, pick up the phone and phone the company.

Rob: So this can impact — you mention at the office, this impacts Canadians and people around the world personally and in business.

Greg: Oh, in business and personally. I know, ourselves, we were plagiarized by $2,000 ourself on our own home computer. So again — and we don't know how and I'm very cautious, as is my wife is very cautious. So it's not only at work, but also at home that you have to be very careful because the crooks are out there looking for an easy mark, so you want to be very careful.

Now, if you do get something from a business that you feel is actually a phishing email — which we have had here in our office, and we called the legitimate business, we asked them whether or not they sent this out and they said 'No' and that they did identify that they had been hacked. So again, let that business know so that they can go through.

Rob: How does insurance cover us when it comes to getting scammed via email?

Greg: Well, there are insurance coverages in place on some of your home policies. Again, you'd have to talk to your broker. And for any of the businesses that are out there listening, we highly recommend getting cyber coverage in place because we have seen and witnessed some very large claims when the business has been hacked. They come in, they clean things up. But we're seeing, depending upon the size, anywhere from $100,000 to $200,000.

Rob: More details, these tips on the website.

Greg: That's correct, nohassleinsurance.ca or please feel free to give us a call and talk to any of our brokers here at the corner of Fairford and 1st Northwest.

(Video transcription by Speechpad)
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