We’ve all received unsolicited offers through email, better known as spam. Many fraudsters use spam to gather personal information to steal your money and/or your identity. Criminals may also send attachments and links that will lead you to spoof sites or cause you to inadvertently download harmful software.
Never email your personal information to an unknown source. You may be enticed by offers of limited-only or buy now and save, but this is always fraudulent. No legitimate business would deny you the time to check out their claims.
If you don’t know the source of an email, delete it. Even if a co-worker or friend you trust sends you a link or attachment, it may be infected.
And remember to keep your computer firewall, anti-virus, and anti-spyware software up to date.
Phishing and Spoofing
Phishing and spoofing communications look like official GF emails, but force you to visit a fake site and enter your personal account information. These emails may also ask you to call a phone number and provide account details.
Ways to identify phishing and spoofing emails include:
- Links that appear to be from GF but aren’t. If you place your cursor over a link in a suspicious email, your program most likely shows you the destination URL. Do not click the link, but look closely at the URL: One that is formatted greenvillefederal.fakewebsite.com is taking you to a fraudulent address. Just because americafirst is part of the URL does not guarantee it is official.
- Requests for personal information. Greenville Federal emails will never ask you to reply with any personal information, such as your Social Security Number or Personal Identification Number (PIN).
- Urgent appeals. We will never claim your account may be closed if you fail to confirm, verify, or authenticate your personal information via email.
- Messages about system and security updates. We won’t seek confirmation of important information via email due to system upgrades.
- Offers that sound too good to be true. Never fill out a customer service survey in exchange for money.
- Obvious typos and other errors. These are often the mark of fraudulent emails and Web sites. Also, be on the lookout for poor visual design.