Christmas; the Season of Scamming
  • Christmas; the Season of Scamming
    Christmas; the Season of Scamming

    Beware Of Online Scammers This Holiday Season

    Christmas can bring many things. It can bring joy, happiness, presents and good food for all but it also brings with us scammers. Now we have all experienced scam e-mails, scam phone calls, and the like but as the holidays ramp up scammers become increasingly more sophisticated. So, it’s more important than ever to keep an eye out.

    DomainTools recently announced that of 1,000 customers in the UK surveyed 20% of them were caught by phishing e-mails pretending to be from a legitimate brand.

    Of that 20%, 16% did not even realize they had fallen for the scam because of the legitimacy of the e-mail. This led to virus infections, stolen personal data and purchase of fake products.

     

    While this survey was done in the UK the same can be said here for us in the US.

    Scammers rely on this time of year to catch you off guard in an increasingly online shopping world. According to the E-Commerce Fraud report by Experian there was an increase in e-commerce fraud attacks of almost 30% last year over 2016 and those numbers only continue to grow into a virtual shopping society.

    The Pad Lock – No Longer safe

    In the earlier days of https there used to be a saying “look for the padlock.”

    It was a way of knowing that your data as secure. Safe. Unfortunately, that may not be the case anymore. Last year Phishlabs released a report that showed a sharp increase in the number of phishing websites that use the padlock security icon.

    This means that checking the lock is no longer safe anymore and it is good to remember that https only means you data is transmitted securely and does not mean the site is legitimate. So how can we combat this?

    • Only go to sites you trust.
    • Never save your credit card information to shopping sites.
    • Always verify that the e-mail comes from a trusted e-mail address.
    • If you receive a suspicious e-mail reach out to your IT provider and ask them to review the e-mail.
    • Never go to a site through an e-mail you haven’t vetted.

    Here is an example of what appears to be a secure e-mail. It ended up in the users spam mailbox.


     

    In the hustle of the shopping session this e-mail could easily be something that you click on to update the information. It looks like FedEx but there are some signs. The @return.poneytelecom.eu links to a .eu domain (Europe) and doesn’t bear any of the marks of a normal fedex return e-mail address.

    Another Trick Is To Hover Over The Link

    We hovered over update my address and you can see the following. None of these look remotely like fedex links do they?

    We want you to have a safe holiday season of shopping and fun. In order to do that we want to make sure that you are safe. If you ever have any doubts about a website or an e-mail please do not hesitate to reach out and we’ll be happy to assist in anyway we can.