Basically a typical phishing email is a fraud email that masquerades itself as a real email being sent from your bank, insurance company or any other enterprise with services you’re using.
It’s not dangerous to get this in your mailbox per se, and as long as you don’t click any link or download any of the attachments which might be part of the email you should be safe, but it’s always good to be backed up with an extra layer of security in the form of an anti-virus suite that scans your email for these kind of intrusive emails.
There is also a new form of cybercrime software called ransomware which also spreads through phishing emails. This type of malware locks down random documents in your computer and when you try to open them, they present you a set of instructions you need to follow if you want to get the access back to your file. Most of the time they want you to pay a fixed amount of money to a certain off shore account. When that has been done, they will send you a code that should unlock the file again. However, since the people behind the virus care little to nothing at all about your files, they could as well not send you the unlock code even if the money have safely arrived in their bank account.
So to make sure that the risk of getting infected by these type of viruses is avoided, make sure that your spam filter for your email is up-to-date and working. Make sure you also have an anti-virus that is up to date and fully functioning.