Vishing: Understanding and Preventing Vishing Scams


Advanced communication technologies have constantly evolved cyber risks, one of which is voice phishing, or vishing. To keep you and your organization safe, this blog explains what vishing is, how to spot its warning signs, and how to protect yourself against it.

What is Vishing or Voice Phishing?

It is a type of social engineering attack when attackers call and impersonate reputed organisations, such as banks or government agencies, and use manipulation to create a sense of urgency or fear to get their victims to disclose personal information. Unlike the more commonly known email phishing, vishing uses the trust we usually place in voice interactions.

Today, vishing calls are not limited to simple calls like asking for bank details or credit card numbers. The fraudsters now try various tactics to manufacture emergencies, the purpose for all is the same to create panic in their targets. And, with the rise of smart devices and VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) technology, these attacks have become easier and more prevalent, as criminals can mask their identities and locations effortlessly.

Spotting the warnings of a vishing attempt is very important in preventing these scams. Here are some red flags to watch out for:

  • Unsolicited Calls: Be cautious of unexpected calls from unknown numbers, especially if the caller claims to be from a reputable organization.
  • Creating a fake sense of emergency: Scammers often use human emotions to create a sense of panic and ask you to act immediately without deliberating. Phrases like “Your account will be frozen,” or “Your debit card will be blocked” are common.
  • Requests for sensitive information: Reputable companies don’t ask for sensitive information over the phone. Callers asking for passwords, bank account information, or ID-proof numbers should be avoided.
  • Too Good to Be True Offers: Vishing scams frequently involve offers that sound too good to be true, like winning the huge lottery or getting a free, unsolicited vacation.
  • Caller ID Spoofing: Be mindful that it is simple to fabricate caller ID. If you are unsure about the caller’s identity, don’t believe the number that is displayed.

How to Safeguard Against Vishing

  • Verify the caller’s identity: One of the most effective ways to combat vishing is by verifying the caller’s identity. This involves asking specific questions and taking certain steps to ensure the caller is who they claim to be.
  • Trust your instincts: If something feels off about the call, it’s better to err on the side of caution. Trusting your instincts can prevent potential fraud.
  • Avoid taking actions on call: it’s crucial to avoid clicking on links, installing apps, or making configuration changes based on phone calls. Links can lead to malicious websites, apps can compromise device security, and configuration changes can weaken your defences. Always verify such requests through trusted sources and official channels.
  • Use multi-factor authentication (MFA): Wherever possible, enable MFA to enhance your security. This adds an extra layer of protection, making it significantly harder for cybercriminals to gain unauthorized access even if they obtain your password.
  • Don’t share sensitive information: Avoid sharing personal, financial, or confidential information over a phone call. Be vigilant and trust yourself before sharing any information.

How can we help?

Your employees’ vulnerability to vishing attacks can be eliminated or significantly decreased with security awareness training. Cybersecurity awareness training is provided to employees by firms, although it is typically conducted infrequently to comply with regulatory obligations. Security leaders encounter difficulties in motivating and boosting user engagement in these sessions.

This is the point where we can help your organization. We, Cybersec Knights, assist companies in creating training programs that address a variety of topics, and we provide the training through a variety of platforms, including events, wallpaper, infographics, and online news items. Using our e-learning platform SECAWARE, we break complex information security subjects like vishing down into small chunks and provide relevant and personalized content to keep employees interested throughout.

Reach out to us today to foster a cyber-safe work environment for your business.