A type of cyberattack during which a hacker redirects their victim’s traffic from the original website to a fake one. They can do so in two ways: by infecting computers and changing their host files or by infecting a DNS server and letting it solve victims’ DNS requests.
Why pharming is dangerous
By using pharming, cybercriminals can steal your login credentials and use them to impersonate you and lure money out of your friends and family. They can also change your passwords and then demand you pay ransom to get your accounts back.
How to avoid pharming
- Never click on suspicious links in messages and emails, even if your friends or coworkers sent them.
- Check the URL of the websites you visit and make sure they are safe — look for the padlock icon next to the URL.
- Use a VPN. It encrypts your traffic and uses its own DNS servers to solve your DNS requests.
- Use additional security software, like NordVPN’s Threat Protection. It scans files for malware before you download them, stops you from landing on malicious websites, and blocks trackers and intrusive ads on the spot.