Typically when we think of phishing scams – particularly those that still use phone calls as a method of contact – we picture a specific type of target. We imagine these scams only go after the kind of person who would easily fall for a ploy to get access to personal data, namely older people who are often less tech-savvy than younger generations and less likely to be suspicious about requests that seem legitimate on the surface.

A phishing scam currently making the rounds on the University of North Dakota campus, however, has a different target in mind. While professors and staff could be potential victims, it’s actually the students who are receiving suspicious emails and phone calls from someone claiming to work for UND. Students are being asked for information such as social security numbers to help clear up an issue with their student loan.

The university was quick to state that these requests are not coming from anyone affiliated with them. UND will not ask for sensitive information over the phone or via email and has asked that students not respond to these requests. Those who have gotten one of these messages or calls are being asked to contact UND Tech Support to verify the legitimacy of the request.

For the most part, the UND students are not falling for this scam. They are aware of the danger that scammers pose, and are familiar with the way phishing operates. Having grown up with technology as a key part of their lives, most students are well-versed in basic cyber security best practices and can protect themselves from these types of attempts.

Essentially, a campus full of teenagers and young adults are successfully outsmarting cybercriminals, and it raises a question business professionals should be considering – could your staff do the same? Technology plays a key role in your daily life as well, and while it would be awful for a twenty-year-old to have to deal with the consequences of identity theft, chances are the stakes are much higher if one of your employees were to make the same mistake. Your business has much more to lose.

Want to learn more about how to protect your business from a phishing scam? Contact Insight Technologies at info@greatinsight.com or (701) 775-5512. We’re the IT security professionals businesses in Fargo, Grand Forks, and Bismarck trust.

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