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Scams | Security awareness | Birmingham City Council

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Scams

Scams are designed to fool you into giving valuable information away, without realising it. Cyber crime often relies on psychological scams to mislead you into revealing information, but as always, the last line of defence is you.

For each of the main sections summarised below, there is more detailed, essential guidance provided in the menu above, to help ensure that we all ‘think before we click’.

Remember, if it doesn’t seem right, stop and report it immediately via email to the network.security.team@birmingham.gov.uk.

  • Email is one of the main ways we communicate in our professional and personal lives but it's often an open door for malicious attacks into the entire council and our partner organisations.
  • Phishing and Spear Phishing
    Phishing is an attack that uses email to trick or fool you into taking an action, such as clicking on a link, divulging information or opening an attachment.
    Spear phishing is tailored personal attacks– using personal information the hacker has gathered about you.
  • Phone scams/vishing - are still common and text message scams are on the increase. Scammers want you to either tell them over the phone or click on a link within a text and enter bank account details or log in credentials.
  • Smishing or SMS phishing uses text messages to trick people into making a payment or click on suspicious links. Sometimes attackers try to access victims via phone (vishing) by sending a text message asking them to call a number.
  • The Internet is constantly evolving, so it’s important to stay safe and secure online especially when working in public spaces where it’s essential to remain vigilant by looking after council equipment and information as well as ensuring the security of public wi-fi.
  • Social media - is closely woven into society and the council is increasingly using social media channels like Twitter to deliver and promote services.
  • Saving, sharing and storing electronic documents must only be done via the council’s own safe internal and online services for communication and storage.

It is vitally important that we all keep well informed about these type of scams and other Cyber Security risks, so please familiarise yourself with the information and guidance available.