Phishing Test

The times they are a-changin’.

This post seems to be older than 18 years—a long time on the internet. It might be outdated.

Saw this on Lifehacker today.

The Phishing IQ test offers up ten different emails, then asks you to determine whether each email is legit or a phishing fraud. From InternetNews:

According to data from e-mail security firm MailFrontier, only 4 percent of users can spot a phished e-mail 100 percent of the time. That’s a very sobering thought as the holiday season is upon us and Americans flock online for their shopping needs.

The test is… well, kind of tricky. Some are obvious, but it’s a guarantee that you’ll scratch your head, totally paranoid, wondering whether all the emails are frauds and you’re being made a complete fool of.

MailFrontier Phishing IQ Test II [via InternetNews]

I got 10/10 correct, so that puts me in the 4% group. How’d I get so good? Here’s a couple of things I look for:

  • Does the email use my first and last name? Most legitimate companies will, especially eBay and PayPal.
  • If the email contains a link, where does it point to? Links should always start with standard company URL. Links to PayPal should always start with, not something else, like
  • How’s the grammar/spelling? You’d be surprised how many phishing sites don’t run spell/grammar check.
  • Are they asking for information that they should already have? If a bank or website loses your information, you probably shouldn’t be doing business with them to begin with. Companies ALWAYS have backups and should will never ask for it. NEVER EVER!

Hope those tips help. If you find something that you think is a phishing scam and really have no idea, feel free to forward it to me and I’ll take a look at it.

[tags]Lifehacker, phishing, tips, suggestions[/tags]