Wal Mart has issued a warning to its customers that identity thieves are sending out phishing emails in which the identity thieves claim to be from Wal-Mart.com. The email appears to be a confirmation of an online Wal-Mart purchase that requires the person receiving the email to click on a link in the email to provide information to confirm the purchase. This particular email is not, however, being sent by Wal-Mart and if you click on the link and provide the credit card information and other information requested, you will become a victim of identity theft. Phishing, as regular readers of Scamicide and “50 Ways to Protect Your Identity in a Digital Age” know is the technique by which identity thieves contact you posing as a company or governmental agency that you deal with and then lure you into providing information that is then used to make you a victim of identity theft.
Never click on links unless you are absolutely sure that they are legitimate. Even if they do not ask you for personal information, merely clicking on the link can result in keystroke logging malware being downloaded to your computer that can enable the identity thief to steal all of your personal information from your computer including your Social Security number, bank account numbers and credit card numbers. In this particular Wal-Mart scam, the easiest way to know that it is bogus is if you have not purchased something from walmart.com. However, even if you had, Wal-Mart would not contact you to confirm sensitive information. Whenever you are in doubt, you can always call the company at a telephone number that you know is legitimate in order to confirm that the email was a scam.