You are no doubt familiar with the nuisance of E-mail scams. With times, these have evolved in a bid to avoid your mail box filters. Here is a list of red flags to aid you in quickly spot an E-mail scam that could be dangerous for your bank account or computer.
A suspicious attachment
The most common E-mail scam nowadays comes like an ordinary mail you could be getting from a friend or family member with an attachment that you readily download. If you receive an attachment from an expected sender, it could be a virus or a trojan horse that can harm your computer.
How many times have you received an E-mail from Yahoo! but the link to the page does not begin with “http://yahoo.com”? This is an E-mail scam which could get your account information or even bank account and credit card details! All such E-mail scam links take you to a page that looks genuine for resetting your password or confirm credit card numbers or simply log in to redeem some special feature. To check authenticity, keep in mind that all relevant URL should begin with http:// or https:// followed by the website address.
A notification for an account you never opened
E-mail scams come from popular websites that have a number of account holders. If you end up getting an E-mail from Paypal when you do not even have an account with Paypal, then it is definitely an E-mail scam.
A fake password reset request
Another common E-mail scam is a password reset request. This is an email that says you requested for a password change and takes you to a ‘genuine’ web page where you should enter your ‘old user ID and password’! If you do not even have an account on the website, you can spot the E-mail scam instantly; if you do have a account remember that no banking institution or credit card establishment send E-mails with links like these ever!
A Sender address that makes no sense
It is important to know that official Emails from any website will come from the same website. So, if you get a mail from ‘email@example.com’ to give you important updates for your Youtube.com account, it is definitely an E-mail scam. Make sure that your Email settings allow you to see the entire header so you can always see the sender’s information.
Money transfer help E-mail scams
Ever received an E-mail from a Nigerian businessman or doctor asking you to help him transfer an obscene amount of money from his account to your US account before somebody takes it away? He will promise you a percentage in an Email that is spelt incorrectly, is written in CAPS and grammatically poor! (Sometimes these can be very well written too.) The newer version has somebody from your ‘church group’ asking you to help. This is the best E-mail scams so far to get your bank account information.
E-mail scams from friends
These are the most dangerous E-mail scams as these are sent by people in your contact list. This will happen when your friend or co-worker’s computer is infected or their Email has been compromised. If you find strange characters, unexpected attachments and links leading you to a file sharing website or look different in any other way; it is advisable to talk to them before you open an attachment or download anything.
How about Emails from yourself?
Yes, you could see Emails from yourself that you never sent sitting pretty in your inbox! This is an E-mail scam and you must immediately change your password as well as the security question. Check your sent folder to see if other Emails were sent out and let the recipients know it is not you before they download anything. You can let your know Email provider know your account is compromised and if it happens again, your computer is virus infected too.
With time scammers keep developing new schemes to get to your personal information through varied E-mail scams. A lot of skepticism and Sherlock caution is required! Be aware of Virus removal as well as Spyware software to keep updated.