Cyber Security Awareness- What is Phishing? Phishing email messages, websites, and phone calls are designed to steal money. The activity of defrauding an online account holder of financial information by posing as a legitimate company. Cybercriminals can do this by installing malicious software on your computer or stealing personal information off of your computer. They most often gain access to a system through an email or link that we click on, opening the door to our system.