Despite living in a civilized society, the web is the wild west – with attempts at fraud, scams, and phishing coming right to your
door inbox. With so many scam attempts out there, do you know the best practices in identifying one?
This is where you receive an email generally disguised as a legitimate company (a popular one to mimic is Facebook). This email will attempt to direct you to a disguised website where you’re tricked into inputting some information, which is then collected by the scammer.
Once you click on a link from the above, it will take you to a website disguised as Facebook asking you to login to see the notifications. Of course, it’s not actually Facebook and once you enter your info, the scammer will have it.
This is a popular scam, and is very hard to differentiate from an actual Facebook email.
|A legitimate Facebook URL:
|A spam URL:
Phishing scams are often used to collect banking information as well, wherein you may receive a seemingly legitimate email from the bank you do business with, asking you to verify your account information. Don’t fall for it! The bank would already have your info and would never ask you to verify it in such a manner.
In this case, an email attachment could contain a virus – such as an image. Or, the email might be a phishing scam (disguised as a company), but one which directs you to a webpage that installs malware on your computer. Malware is like a spy program on your computer that collects sensitive information in the background as you conduct online banking, etc, then sending this information off to the scammer.
Also known as the “Nigerian scam”, this is where the emailer is telling you they have money to give you for some reason or another. It starts as a seemingly personalized email from an individual, where if you respond they will continue to write back, leading you along with this temptation until they ask for a comparatively small amount of money in advance for some sort of “expenses”. In some cases, it might even look (somewhat) legitimate, where they’re inquiring about purchasing a product/service from you (if you’re a business).
Take for example this email where the person claims they’ve inherited some money which they want to give to you:
If you were to respond to a message like this, they would email you back and ask you to transfer something like $3000 to their account as an advance for their expenses before they can access/transfer you the “$3 million”.
Of course, if you pay them this, you never see the money they promised you, and they disappear.
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Thanks for reading,