Student Guide: How to avoid Phishing Email/Scams
Guidance by Plano ISD Cybersecurity Services
You Get an Email That Looks Like it's From Someone You Know
Email seems to be from one of the teachers or a district official and asks that you click on a link. Should you click? Maybe it looks like it’s a job offer and asks for your personal information and bank account information. Should you reply? Maybe it asks for money. Should you send money? These may be phishing/scam attempts.
How Phishing Works
You get an email or text
It seems to be from someone you know, and it asks you to click a link, or give your password, bank account, or other sensitive information.
It looks real
It’s easy to spoof logos and make up fake email addresses. Scammers use familiar names or pretend to be someone you know.
The message pressures you to act now — or something bad will happen or you may lose the opportunity.
What happens next
If you click on a link, scammers can install ransomware or other malware on your computer. If you share passwords, scammers now have access to all those accounts. If you send money, you may not be able to recover the money.
What You Can Do
Before you click on a link or share any of your sensitive business information or send the money or deposit the check:
Check it out
Look up the website or phone number for the company or person behind the text or email. Speak to the company or the person to see if it is legit.
Talk to someone
Talking to your campus administrators and parents might help you figure out if the request is real or a phishing attempt.
Make a call if you're not sure
Pick up the phone and call that vendor, colleague, or client who sent the email. Confirm that they really need information from you. Use a number you know to be correct, not the number in the email or text.
What To Do If You Fall For a Phishing Scheme
Limit the damage
If you provided your username and password, immediately change any compromised passwords. If you sent the money, immediately contact the bank to see if they can recover it.
Forward phishing emails to firstname.lastname@example.org and notify the campus administrator
Talk to your colleagues and share your experience. Phishing attacks often happen to more than one person in a school.