Important Information About Spotting Phishing Emails

From time to time we see a number of fake emails or (‘phishing’) as it’s known used for targeting many companies on the internet and we’d like help you spot, stop and avoid being taken in by these fraudsters.

What are phishing emails ?

Phishing is a term given to a computer crime that is rapidly growing on the Internet

Phishing is used to forged (fake) emails use to gather information by claiming to be from a company that is well known and trusted, usually a bank, building society or other organisation (E.g. PayPal, eBay and the Bank of Scotland etc)

The Phishing emails will often look exactly like you would expect a legitimate email from your bank to look, they will use the same colours, logos and form items for you to complete.

The difference is that when you submit your information you will not be sending it to the real company, it will be sent to a criminal organisation who can then use that information to either withdraw money from your account or perform other criminal acts such as identity theft.

How can I protect myself from Phishing emails ?

1. Check the header of the email, make sure your banks email address is in there and that it isn’t a fake address.
2. Pay close attention to the “To:” part of the email as often the email will not be addressed directly to you. If it isn’t then it may not be a legitimate email from the organisation it claims to be from. Also, if the “To:” address contains multiple addresses this is also likely to be a sign that the email is a fake.
3. Check the subject of the email as often phishing emails will contain spelling mistakes, bad grammar and use words such as “Important Announcement “.
4. Check and make sure the logo on the email is correct and exactly the same as the one of the organisations website, letter headers.
5. Check any links in the email as this is often the biggest clue when it comes to phishing emails. remember if you click a link in an email and you are not sure if its genuine check with the organisation first before entering any personal information.

 

Remember: if your ever in doubt or you think something isn’t right, contact the organisation or report what you have found to your local trading standards agency.

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