Wednesday, 22 August 2007
Beware an increasing trend in email spam; the message appears like a legitimate welcome letter from an online service...
Here is an example that I received today:
Welcome, Here is your membership info for Funny-Files. Member Number: 31544784369763Temporary Login: user1626Temp Password ID: dg225 Please keep your account secure by logging in and changing your login info. Click on the secure link or paste it to your browser: http://188.8.131.52x2/ Enjoy,Welcome DepartmentFunny-Files
This is a perfect example of what is considered “Phishing”. Recently, I’ve started receiving two or three of these daily. The website, member # & login don’t really exist. Instead, you’ll be forwarded to a website that will likely infect your computer. Legitimate websites RARELY use an IP address (a website consisting of numbers, not letters. ie; “http: //64.123.456.001”). In the above example, the “secure link” is an IP address, not a legitimate website.
If you did sign up for something, type the name of the website (ie; wellsfargo.com) directly in your browser instead of clicking on the link in an email. Even though a link within the message appears as www.website.com, the hidden information may send you somewhere completely different.
Again, NEVER click on a link within an email unless you’re 100% positive you requested the email. Practice on the safe side by opening your web browser manually and type the website in by hand. A few seconds more may save you a ton of headaches.