Why you shouldn’t scan QR codes sent in emails – Times of India

Reports from cyber security companies point to an increase Phishing attacks via e-mail. A report last month noted that fraudsters are using QR codes Encrypt links to phishing and scam pages. This calls for more vigilance and caution on the part of users. Here we share some pointers on how you can protect yourself from such scams.
What are phishing attacks?
A phishing attack is a type of cyberattack where hackers send fraudulent communications that appear to come from a reputable source. These types of attacks are usually done via e-mail.
Why are QR codes a threat?
Governments, brands, and cybersecurity companies are constantly informing people about the tricks hackers use to target people. It is common practice for cybercriminals to send links to launch cyberattacks. With more awareness, users are more likely to skip clicking on suspicious-looking links.
Calls in QR codes that allow users to simply scan them and their work is done. Criminals use this feature to target people. Unlike email addresses or links that help identify a cyber attack, there is no way to check or block a QR code.
With a QR code, it's impossible to tell what link will open when users scan it. Fraudsters use QR codes to encrypt links to phishing and scam pages.
What happens when you scan a QR code?
When such QR codes are scanned, the user is redirected to a fake website that asks for important personal information, such as an email address. Mail credentials and financial information. When you tap data, it gets stolen by hackers and they can use it for monetary gain.
how to protect
Although there has not been an alarming number of cases, users need to be wary of such emails. Here's how you can spot potentially dangerous emails:

  • First, an email with a QR code should be the first red flag. If the email contains code, consider it malicious.
  • A typical fake email contains a warning or message stating that your account password will expire and you may lose access to your mailbox. The email will contain a QR code that will potentially take you to a malicious website.
  • Such letters offer quick solutions. They promise that the problem can be solved just by scanning the QR code.
  • Emails that inform users that “the email is from a trusted source” should be treated with caution. In addition, such letters also contain threatening words to make potential victims believe that they have a big problem.

There is no decent authentication system, so scanning the QR code is your only option. What users should do is, if a website asks them to enter personal information, consider that they are probably dealing with a phishing scam.

Explained: How Hackers and Cybercriminals Use the Online Fraud Technique ‘Vishing' to Steal Your Money