Scammers commonly use the internet to commit fraud through unsolicited emails. Fraudulent individuals can easily copy the logo or even the entire website of a legitimate organization in an attempt to lure you into providing personal information or downloading malicious software.
A majority of internet scams are considered to be “phishing scams.” Phishing scams typically occur when scammers falsify their identity, normally by stating that they represent a legitimate corporation or government agency. They try to entice the consumer into revealing their personal information such as bank account numbers, Social Security numbers, passwords, or other sensitive data.
If an email is requesting that you click on a link to a their website in order to “update” or “confirm” your account information, be skeptical and contact the organization directly to verify the legitimacy of the request. Clicking on links contained within the unsolicited email can install malware and spyware unto your computer, allowing fraudulent individuals to gain access to files stored in your computer, personal information and account passwords.
- Never provide your personal, credit card or account information unless you are certain the website is authentic.
- Don’t reply to unsolicited emails, even to unsubscribe, and do not click on any links in an unsolicited email as it may install malicious software into your computer putting your personal information at risk.
- A legitimate bank or financial institution will never ask you to click on a link in an email or provide your account information through an email or website.