A phishing attack is a scam and an effort to steal your personal information. Phishing attacks typically come in the form of fraudulent email messages that appear to have come from a legitimate source. Phishing emails will usually direct to a spoofed website or trick the receiver into divulging personal information like account passwords, credit card information, etc.

These attacks are often designed to appear urgent and panic recipients so that they take immediate action before verifying the legitimacy of the claim made. For example, a phishing email may claim the receiver will lose their account if they do not reset their password immediately through a provided link. Such claims are always indicative of a phishing scam as responsible companies and organizations would never take these actions via email.

If you receive a phishing email, it does not mean your account was hacked or a university system was compromised. Email addresses are publically available across many different websites and services. All a phisher needs is your email address, and they can easily send you a fraudulent and misleading email. Education and awareness are the keys to protecting yourself and your private information.

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