By now, many of us are familiar with the concept of phishing – a form of internet fraud where scammers attempt to gain access to our personal information by using fake content as bait to get us to divulge this information to them. Vishing – voice phishing – is the same concept but instead of sending fake emails or website links, the scammers are calling us in an attempt to access our secure information, such as our Apple ID login and password.
These days vishing scams have become a lot more sophisticated and can be easy to fall for. A very common vishing scam to be on the lookout for and be aware of is someone pretending to be from Apple support – let’s look at why scammers are targeting your apple ID information specifically, how the Apple Support scam usually works, and how you can avoid falling for them going forward.
Why Are Scammers Targeting Your Apple ID?
Your Apple ID is what is needed to be able to access and use any apps on your Apple devices, and stores so much of your personal information. Think about it – you need your Apple ID to login to all of your Apple devices such as Mac, iPhone, iPad, and more recently Apple Pay. Gaining access to your Apple ID login and password allows scammers to access your payment and billing information linked to your apple account which allows you to make app downloads and purchases.
Your Apple ID is also used to access iCloud and is where someone will be able to access all of your private photos, emails, and notes. It is therefore very important not to include any important information such as credit card details or passwords anywhere on your Apple device that can be accessed if your account is hacked.
What Are Apple Support Scams?
There are a number of different forms of Apple ID phishing scams that involve fake emails, text messages, and even app store pop-ups. Scammers will often send emails stating that your account has been locked and will include a link to unlock it again as bait for you to click on it, which then takes you to an unsecured webpage that will ask you to confirm your Apple ID credentials.
More recently, Apple ID scams have involved phone calls from people that claim to be from Apple support – otherwise known as a vishing scam. These scams have been even more successful as people are still not expecting to be scammed over the phone. Apple support scammers have become more sophisticated by making use of spoofed phone numbers which display the incoming call as a real Apple support phone number. By spoofing their number which displays the apple logo, official website, and address, the Apple scammers are hoping people will be more susceptible to answering their calls and following through with their requests to give out personal information.
Tips To Avoid Falling For Apple Support Scams
Some phishing scams are certainly more difficult to identify than others, but there are a few common warning signs and tips to look out for to stop you from falling victim to an Apple support scam:
- Look out for emails or text messages claiming to be from Apple that include spelling and grammar errors.
- Always check the URL of a website claiming to be Apple matches that of Apple.com, and displays a padlock to demonstrate that it is secure.
- Never give out your personal information, Apple ID and password to anyone over the phone – Apple support will never ask for this in reality if there is an issue with it.
- Watch out for suspicious email senders that include unknown links and attachments.
- If someone claiming to be from Apple support calls you and asks for payment upfront before they can fix anything, it is most likely to be a scam.
As we as consumers continue to store our personal information online, we need to educate ourselves on how to keep that information protected. You can read more tips from Apple support on how to avoid falling for a scam, here.
Always remember to take precautions and guard your online information. Keep checking our blog for the latest anti-fraud news tips and updates!