Watch Out for Valentine’s Day Phishing Attacks

Phishing scam
Example of Valentine’s Day phishing email
With Valentine’s Day happening, cybercriminals will tailor their social engineering strategies for the holiday. According to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complain Center, there are scammers who use poetry, flowers, and other gifts to trick victims during this time of year. The most common Valentine’s day email scams are phony florists, phony Valentine’s Day electronic greeting cards, delivery scams, and online dating scams. Here are 4 red flags to watch out for: 1) Don’t trust emails or advertisements from online florists or online gift retailers until you are sure that they are valid. Double check where the email is coming from before you turn your credit card information. If it is a phishing attempt, your credit card information can be compromised and be sent to hackers who can then perform identity theft or install malicious software onto your computer. 2) Don’t trust an online greeting card, especially if it does not indicate who sent it to you. Beware of any greeting card sent by “a secret admirer.” Even if you recognize the name, confirm that it was really sent from that person before you click on the link and open the card. 3) Don’t trust special deliveries. Be wary of suspicious delivery email notifications for gift baskets or any other Valentine’s Day gift. Also, avoid the email if it requests for a small credit card charge because alcohol is part of the gift. 4) Don’t trust anyone who indicates he or she is in love with you and then wants to communicate with you right away on an email account outside of a dating site. They also will probably claim to be working abroad, asking for your address and poor grammar which is often a sign of a foreign romance scammer. Many romance scams originate in Eastern Europe… The rule still applies: THINK before you click.

February 13, 2017 8:29:26 PM

Bill Boisvenue

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