Knowing Pharming: Explanation and How to Avoid It
The development of digitization offers many benefits to life’s activities, but did you know that digitization can also create some threats. Have you ever heard news about losing money through virtual bank websites when they hear they are logging into their virtual bank account as usual. Therefore, this is an example of a pharming offense.
To minimize cybersecurity threats, of course, you need to understand preventative methods to avoid these threats. Additionally, you also need to be selective in providing your personal information and understand the types of cyber threats that can occur.
Therefore, this article will provide you with detailed information on pharming so that it can be a mitigation measure to create a better cyber. Therefore, pay attention to the following article!
What is the drug?
Pharming is a combination of phishing and farming words, a type of cyber attack in which criminals target internet users who wish to visit a website but are redirected to another fake website. The purpose of the crime is to obtain personal information on users and identify them login credentials such as passwords, account numbers, social security numbers, and so on.
As for people who commit pharming offenses, they are called pharmers, they usually target financial websites such as banks, online loans, e-commerce and so on with identity theft as the ultimate goal. This is done because they want to make a profit so that they can do certain money searches with the personal information they get.
How does pharming work?
To know how pharming works, you need to know the domain name of the IP address of the operation. The existence of pharming is a form of exploiting the functioning of Internet browsing by changing the Internet address (URL or domain name) to an IP address by the DNS server so that the connection can be continued. To know the complete process, pay attention to the following points:
- Hackers can first send malicious code via email in hopes of installing a virus or Trojan on your computer user. The malicious code will modify the computer’s hosts file so that it is redirected traffic or traffic is moving away from the desired web destination user and redirects to fake websites.
- Hackers can also use a technique called DNS Poisoning. Manufacturers can change DNS (Domain Name System) on the server causing many users to visit the fake website. In addition, farmers can also install viruses or Trojans on users’ computers to collect personal or financial information in an identity theft attempt.
As for what makes pharming dangerous compared to other crimes why pharming only requires little action from the user. As in the case of DNS Poisoning Affected users may have a completely malware-free computer but continue to fall victim to it.
Even taking precautions such as manually entering website addresses or always using trusted bookmarks is not enough, as a direction error occurs after the computer sends a connection request.
Phishing VS Pharming: What’s the Difference?
Although phishing and pharming are both forms of cybercrime, they can basically be distinguished. So, to find out the difference in detail, pay attention to the following points!
Phishing is a fraudulent practice in which cybercriminals send emails pretending to be from a reputable or official organization. The email contains a malicious link that leads the user to a fake website with the aim of obtaining the user’s personal information. Once a user has entered, such as a password or username, cybercriminals can also use it for criminal purposes for profit.
Pharming is a form of phishing but no element of persuasion is involved (for example, in phishing there is an email to reach the fake website). Basically, pharming doesn’t require an initial click so that it leads to a fake website but goes straight to thedirect automatically so that farmers can access users’ personal information.
Therefore, it is concluded that phishing uses fraudulent emails, social media or certain text messages that ask users to provide their personal information. On the other hand, pharming doesn’t require persuasion like scam emails, social media, or certain texts.
It also discloses pharming as more dangerous than phishing because it deceives without the slightest suspicion on the part of the user. However, pharming is less intense than phishing because it is more complex.
How to protect yourself from pharming attacks
One of the best ways to protect yourself from phishing attacks is to install or run antivirus or antimalware software from a reputable provider. However, there are several things that can be done in an attempt to avoid pharming attacks, most notably as follows:
Apply a reliable antivirus solution
Having a reputable antivirus will not only detect anything suspicious on your computer, it will also block anything abnormal that may occur. Also, make sure the antivirus you are using is up to date so that it can keep up with the growing threat of cyber attacks. However, not all antivirus, antimalware, or spyware removal solutions protect organizations from pharming attacks, so other mitigation measures are needed.
Use a reputable internet provider
Usually, a reputable and trustworthy internet provider will filter out website redirects that are done automatically by pharming. This is also a reminder for users to only sign up for reputable internet providers.
Make sure you always log into secure websites
One way to know that a website is safe is to look at the URL page that uses Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTPS). Basically, HTTPS is traffic which indicates that a website has been encrypted and cannot be intercepted by attackers, so websites with URLs starting with HTTPS are referred to as more secure.
Avoid unknown links and suspicious websites
Most attackers will use website URL shorteners like bit.ly to hide their fake website addresses. This makes you be careful not to click on links you don’t know.
Furthermore, you also need to suspect suspicious websites. When you visit a website that you usually visit but feel there is something else, be sure to scan the website before entering personal stuff.
Check if there is a typo in the URL
Sometimes cyber attackers like farmers take advantage of typos even if it’s just a few letters and redirect them to their website. Therefore, make sure you log into the website with the correct URL address without being mistaken or confused.
Avoid suspicious offers from ecommerce
Usually a popular tactic used by farmers is to hide their website as if it were an e-commerce site and offer fantastic discounts. So make sure you are always rational and don’t get easily provoked by very low prices and make sure you always do it cross and double check.
Use a secure VPN service
Using a virtual private network (VPN) will use secure DNS to help users avoid the risk of pharming attacks.
Change the default password
Consumer routers and wireless access points come with a default password that can be used on several similar devices. Therefore, organizations and users should change the default password on their devices and replace it with a secure and unique password.
Sometimes relying on passwords alone isn’t enough to protect yourself from cybercrime attacks. In anticipation of this, additional security such as two-factor authentication (2FA) and multi-factor authentication (MFA) can be used.
Therefore, when a user wants to log in, additional information will be requested to ensure that the activity is coming from the user himself.
Cyber attacks are a frightening phenomenon for many Internet users. There is a lot of news about data leaks harming users in large numbers. Therefore, we hope this article will increase your knowledge about pharming and how to take mitigation measures.
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