Scam alert. Protect yourself from becoming a victim of identity theft or a computer virus like ransomware, by avoiding fraudulent holiday emails from senders claiming to be Amazon, Paypal, Costco, Starbucks, Pandora and other well-known names. I’ve been getting a lot of those lately, as holiday shopping season gears up, and probably so have you.
Always identify a sender as legit before clicking on any link.
Email security is important 24/7, and even more important with the the mind- boggling Equifax security breach this year, on top of last year’s security breach of Yahoo emails, with as many as one billion Yahoo user accounts affected.
Everbody should protect their identity by making sure you are not one of the 143 million people whose vital information was stolen in the Equifax security breach. Here’s what to do, straight from the Federal Trade Commission.
But I digress. We’re talking about fraudulent emails.
Telltale signs an email is a fraud:
Major companies, including e-tailers, have their own domain name. Amazon.com, Paypal.com, Costco.com, Starbucks.com, Pandora.net. They would not be sending you or me discount buying offers, or alerting me that my account has been limited because of “unusual activity”, from domains like ganfres, marketdemand.date, vertexreward, batterbitters.trade, or survive.stream.
Those are just some of the senders I’ve received recently. I just shake my head and purge them.
The emails look legit, with familiar logos, and even images lifted from a legitimate ad or consumer mailing, but they are not.
I’m a journalist and therefore a grammar nut, who notices things like that.
That’s a giveaway it was written by a non-native English speaker or writer, most likely in one of the countries known for hacking or for fake news sites.
[email protected], do you think I’m stupid enough to respond to an email “Paypal account Limited by unusual Activity” with incorrect capitalization?
[email protected], the words Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and United States in your scam email are always capitalized, but scammers like you either don’t know or don’t care.
patterncool.date, what makes you think do you think I would buy Xmas gift ideas” from you.
[email protected], do you think I would buy ID protection services from your website.
healthywomen.com, are you really an ADT Premier Provider as you claim to be, or a fraud? No matter, if I want home security services, I’ll contact ADT directly.
[email protected], since I don’t have a Western Union account, why would you emailing me a recent suspicious log-in on the account I don’t have.
[email protected], why would I respond to you about a service upgrade to GoDaddy, when GoDaddy has its real, true honest and secure domain, which begins with the all important HTTPS. The “s” is sure secure.
Use the drop-down or ID feature on your device to identify the sender before you open yourself to years of grief from a sender something like change-life-management.com.
Do not click any link on any email from any sender you do not know.
Even if you are sick of finding these obviously fraudulent emails in your daily inbox, as I am, never NEVER click the “unsubscribe here” link, unless you want to introduce a virus, malware that leads to identify theft or some other expensive and time-consuming catastrophe.
While I can add some email senders to my blacklist to block and purge without me ever seeing the email, to my email provider tells me there’s no way to blacklist and block senders with extensions such as .trade, .date., .deal. So, I just purge them.
If you want to purchase Pandora jewelry or home security services, go straight to the source, or do a browser search for canvas prints or personalized letters from Santa. Do not click on the email.
When you shop online, look for HTTPS in the URL, which tells you it’s a secure site for financial transactions, and also meets the latest Google requirements for general security.
Just so you know, ecoXplorer is an HTTPS site.
I hope attorneys for Amazon, Paypal, Costco, Starbucks and Pandora are reading this, and crack down on the fraudulent senders using their good name.
Please contact me, [email protected], so I can share the next batch of scam emails that are using your good name in vain and help you stop them.