Quickbooks is a popular accounting software program used by many people which is why scammers are sending out emails where they pose as Quickbooks and tell you that your bill is overdue. The email indicates that attached to the email is a copy of your invoice. Someone receiving this email telling them that they owe past due payments would be sorely tempted to immediately click on the link to examine the invoice. DON”T DO IT. This is a scam. If you click on the link, you will unwittingly download a keystroke logging malware program that will steal personal information from your computer and use it to make you a victim of identity theft. I recently received such an email. It indicated it was from firstname.lastname@example.org and carried the message line of “Please respond – overdue payment.” Here is a copy of the email:
“Please find attached your invoices for the past months. Remit the payment by 04/11/2013 as outlines under our “Payment Terms” agreement.
Thank you for your business,
This e-mail has been sent from an automated system. PLEASE DO NOT REPLY.
The information contained in this message may be privileged, confidential and protected from disclosure. If the reader of this message is not the intended recipient, or an employee or agent responsible for delivering this message to the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that any dissemination, distribution or copying of this communication is strictly prohibited. If you have received this communication in error, please notify your representative immediately and delete this message from your computer. Thank you.”
Whenever you receive an email with a link or an attachment, never click on the link or download the attachment unless you are absolutely positive that it is legitimate. If the email is from a friend, even if the email address is correct, their email account may have been hacked and an identity thief is using the email to send out keystroke logging malware in attachments or links. If the email appears to be from a company with which you do business, the safest thing to do is to contact the company by phone or go to their website to confirm whether or not the email was legitimate. In the case of Quickbooks, their website is http://quickbooks.intuit.com/. You can get account information that you can rely on by going to the website.
It is also important to maintain the security software on your computer, smart phone or other portable devices and make sure they are up to date. However, don’t rely totally on the security software to bail you out because security software is generally effective only 5% of the time against the latest viruses. It takes the security software companies about a month to catch up to the latest threats and provide updates that you should install.