Today’s Scam of the day is about a phishing email  I received that purports to be from American Express. The graphics, grammar and overall appearance of the email is not very convincing and the lettering is quite odd.. In addition, it does not even carry the American Express logo, which is a simple thing to counterfeit.   As always, the purpose of a phishing email is to lure you into clicking on links contained within the email or providing personal information. If you click on the links, you end up downloading malware and if you provide the requested information, it ends up being used to make you a victim of identity theft. This particular email indicates that information is required to be verified, but doesn’t even attempt to provide a reason as to why.  You are instructed to click on a link in the email.  Don’t do it!  If you do you will provide your account information to an identity thief.  Some indications that this is a scam are that the email does not indicate your account number and finally, the email address from which it was sent is not an email address of American Express, but most likely that of someone whose email address was hacked and made a part of a botnet. Here is the phishing email.

I have disarmed the link in the original phishing email, but if you hovered your mouse over “CONFIRM ACCOUNT” in the actual phishing email, you would see that the link would not take you to an American Express related website.

 

Amᥱrіⅽaᥒ Eхpreѕs Customеr Cаre Support
fϲϲraCUEo3

ѕtevenjjwеⅰsⅿan yо∪r action rᥱqᥙired iⅿmᥱdⅰɑteⅼy

Ⲩour accouᥒt rᥱq∪ⅰreⅾ ∨erifying some іnformatiⲟnѕ.
Transсations ⅿay be ⅼimited оn ỿour аccount.
Plᥱase cliсk tһᥱ button bеⅼоwɑnd folloᴡ ɑ few ᴠerificatіoᥒ steps.
CONFIRM ACCOUNT
Aⅿeriсaᥒ Εⲭⲣrᥱsѕ Customᥱr Care
All uѕers of our onⅼine servicеs are ѕubjᥱct to our Ꮲrivaⅽу Ѕtɑteⅿᥱnt and аɡrᥱe tഠ be boᥙᥒd by the Terms of Servіcᥱ. Рⅼᥱaѕᥱ review.

© 2020 Americaᥒ Εxpress. Αlⅼ rⅰghts reѕᥱrved

TIPS

Never click on links or download attachments in emails or text messages unless you have absolutely confirmed that they are legitimate. If you receive an email such as this and you have the slightest thought that it might be legitimate, you should call the 800 number on the back of your credit card to confirm that this is a scam. Finally, be careful if you do make the call to your credit card company because in some instances, enterprising scammers will purchase phone numbers that are only a digit off from those of legitimate credit card companies or banks in an effort to snare people who may mistakenly misdial the number when trying to contact their credit card company or bank.

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.

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As we start the new year, I have a favor to ask of Scamicide readers.  Please urge at least one of your friends and family to subscribe to Scamicide.com.  There is no cost and it is easy to do.   Scamicide subscribers get the very latest important information about scams, identity theft and cybersecurity which can go a long way toward keeping you safe from these threats.  The more people we can help, the better.  Best wishes for a safe and healthy new year.