Suspicious Emails Could Open Your Computer to Attack

Scam alert

Cyber criminals are always looking for their next score, and that target could be you. Do you know what to do if you receive a suspicious email?

In a suspicious email, the criminal will use tempting or threatening language to get you to do one of two things: click on a link or download an attachment. If you do either of these actions, you open your computer to attack from the criminal.

If you receive a suspicious email, do not open any attachments or follow any links that may be embedded in the suspicious message from an unknown sender.

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Bait and Switch

Bait and Switch

You just received a notification e-mail from a shipper that a courier attempted delivery of a package to you but was unable to complete the process. The message provides a helpful link for you to click on and learn more about the package. Do you click on it?

Chances are, the e-mail you received is a scam. If you’re not expecting a package or didn’t send one out recently, ignore the message. DO NOT click on the link. Scammers are attempting to send you to an alternative website that can place a virus or Trojan onto your computer, fool you into giving up personal information, or use your curiosity for other nefarious purposes. If you click on the link, you’re opening yourself up to big trouble.

If you must find out if the e-mail is genuine, open a fresh page in your web browser, manually type in the website of the shipper, and look for a way to contact the company to inquire about the message.

Here’s a sample message a scammer might send you:

Notification

Your package has arrived on August 16th, but the messenger was unable to deliver the package to you. For more detailed information, please, Print and Read the Shipping Label.”

This particular e-mail has an authentic-looking logo from a popular shipper and could easily give someone the impression that a package is waiting for them at the office. Don’t fall for it. NEVER click on a link from any company or individual unless you’re expecting it. Even then, be sure of what you’re clicking on before you place your pointer over the link.

Only you can cut a scammer off from their ill-gotten gains.

Scammers Grab More Than Attention Through the Phone

Scammers grab more than attention

Scammers have been used the telephone to try and get money from victims for many years. While the tricks of the trade may change over time, the information they request usually remains the same.

Millions of people are contacted every day through voice and text messages from people offering a free vacation, free funding, free gift cards, and many other tempting treats. Some may be legitimate offers, but other are not. How can you tell the difference?

One of the ways a scammer will convince a victim to release their money is by putting them under pressure. Pushing a person to make a quick decision removes the possibility of mulling over the value and legitimacy of the offer. Always take your time to make the best decision possible. If the “value” of the offer can’t wait for you to think it over, then don’t take the deal.

A scammer will always ask for a way to access your financial info or personal data, even with a free prize. They might ask you to pay the taxes and fees associated with your prize, or for information such as your social security number and birth date to enroll in a free offer. Don’t fall for it. Ask for them to send you the related documents in the mail. If it’s a legitimate offer, there should be no problem with that request, and don’t let them convince you otherwise.

Scammers will almost always make their offer too good to be true. Remember the old saying, “if it’s too good to be true, it probably is.” If someone is offering you a fabulous prize for a brief survey, and then requests your credit card number to pay for the fees associated with it, don’t do it. They’ll likely max out your card and laugh all the way to the bank, leaving you with no prize and a hefty bill.

Keep in mind that while scammers are more likely to call your personal phone, they can also call your work number too. Business phones aren’t exempt from a scammers calling list, so be aware of the possibility and limit what information you provide over the phone.

The unscrupulous few in the population that want what you have will try everything they can to get it. Don’t be fooled. Keep your information safe to keep them out business.

  • Hello, I'm Benny the Blogger: I'm the world's most famous postal employee. My hobbies are snappy quotes, kite flying and publishing. I was born Jan. 17, 1706, but don't call me old.

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