Valentine’s Day is coming tomorrow and with it will be many electronic Valentine’s Day cards. They are quick and easy to send. Even more importantly, if you have neglected to get a card for your sweetheart until now, you can send an e card and it is right on time. Electronic cards can be quite clever and attractive, however, identity thieves are aware of how popular e cards are so they take advantage of this toward their own illegal ends. Phony e cards often come tainted with a dangerous keystroke logging malware program so when you download what you think is an electronic Valentine’s Day card, what you actually are downloading is malware that will read and steal all of the information on your computer and make you a victim of identity theft.
The first thing to do is to check the email address of the sender of the card, however, be careful to read it carefully because sometimes identity thieves use close variations on the names of legitimate card manufacturers. Most tellingly however, legitimate e cards will always tell you from whom the card is being sent. Phony email cards will generally say something like “a secret admirer.” Never open an e card from a secret admirer. Frankly, before opening any e card, it is a good idea to communicate with the person who is puported to be sending you the e card to confirm that indeed he or she really has sent you an e card. It may sound a bit paranoid, but even paranoids have enemies.