Today’s Scam of the day is about a phishing email presently circulating that attempts to lure you into clicking on a link in order to continue using your AOL account.  If you click on the link one of two things can occur and both are bad.  Either you will end up providing personal information to an identity thief or you will, merely by clicking on the link, download dangerous malware such as ransomware on to your phone, computer or other device.  Here is the email presently being circulated.  The link where it reads “Click Here” has been disabled.  If you hovered your mouse over the link, you would have seen that it would not have taken you to an AOL website.

AOL Official Mail banner image.

Prior to AOL Users

Starting November 25th, 2020, customers who have not updated their email account

will no longer be able to log in to AOL and through their email addresses

Active customers will have to verify their email address to confirm.

Kindly CLICK HERE to verify and prevent loss of account.

We apologize for any inconvenience caused.

Thank you,

AOL

Please do not reply to this e-mail. Mail sent to this address cannot be answered.

For assistance, log in to your email! website and choose the “Help” link on any page.Customer Service Email ID # 1009.

c 2020!, Inc. All rights reserved

TIPS

When AOL communicates with its customers about their accounts, they do so by AOL Certified Mail, which will appear as a blue envelope in your inbox and will have an official AOL Mail seal on the border of the email.  The copy of the official AOL Mail seal that appears in this phishing email is a counterfeit.  No official AOL Mail seal appears in the inbox.  This email also  had no salutation indicating to whom the email was being sent.  Whenever you get an email, you cannot be sure who is really sending it.   In the case of this email, the email address of the sender had no relation to AOL and most likely was the email address of someone whose email account was hacked and made a part of a botnet of computers used by cybercriminals to send such communications.  Never click on a link unless you are absolutely sure that it is legitimate.  If you think the email might be legitimate, the best thing to do is to contact the real company that the email purports to be from at an address or phone number that you know is accurate in order to find out if the communication was legitimate or not.

Some other telltale signs that this is a phishing email include the faulty grammar which is often found in phishing emails originating in countries where English is not the primary language.

For those of you receiving the Scam of the day through an email, I just want to remind you that if you want to see the ever increasing list of Coronavirus scams go to the first page of the http://www.scamicide.com website and click on the tab at the top of the page that indicates “Coronavirus Scams.”  Scamicide was recently cited by the New York Times as one of three top sources for information about Coronavirus related scams.

If you are not a subscriber to Scamicide.com and would like to receive daily emails with the Scam of the day, all you need to do is to go to the bottom of the initial page of http://www.scamicide.com and click on the tab that states “Sign up for this blog.”