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Newsletter #1

New Phishing Threats

Typically, a “Phishing” scam takes the form of an email that you would receive from a large company that you may have an account with. Ebay, PayPal, and City Bank have been some of the most common companies that have been used as a cover. Though Phishing emails may appear to be coming from these companies, they are not and the scam artist is hoping that you will not notice this and click on one of the links in the email. The link will take you not to Ebay’s web site, but the the scam artist’s web site (that will be made to resemble Ebay) where you will be asked to input your user name and password. Once the scammer has these, he can access your account and do things that you probably don’t want him to do (like take all your money).

I have discussed this issue with many of you in the past, but I think an update is in order as scam artists are starting to use smaller brands to hide their fraudulent emails. As reported by Techdirt, scammers are becoming aware that their methods are becoming easily recognizable and are shifting to a new model. Now it appears that they are using smaller companies, or topics of interest that you may not expect. So please be cautious when clicking on links in an email, you don’t know where you may end up. Though in some email applications and in both Internet Explorer and Firefox, you can see the full URL of the link when you roll your cursor over it. The URL appears in the status bar at the very bottom of the email or browser application window (see attached image). If the link in the status bar does not appear to match what is in the email, there may well be a problem with that link.