Scam of the Day

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Scam of the day – September 17, 2020 – Hackers Exploiting Vulnerabilities to Attack Porn Surfers

Pornography websites are among the most widely searched websites on the Internet and this fact is not lost on a hacking group called Malsmoke  who have recently managed to install malware on many of those websites.    The malware is imbedded in malicious ads then when clicked on downloads a variety of dangerous malware.  The vulnerabilities being exploited by Malsmoke involve Adobe Flash and Internet Explorer so if anyone is not using those two programs, they have nothing to fear.

I have long advised you about not using the seriously vulnerable Abobe Flash software which will stop being updated and distributed at the end of this year.  As for Internet Explorer, this once popular browser has been largely abandoned by Microsoft and also should not be used.   Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are popular alternatives to use for browsing.   Flaws in Adobe Flash have been exploited by hackers and identity thieves against individuals, companies and government agencies including the U.S. State Department and the White House. Although, Adobe will still be issuing security patches until the end of this year, but now is a good time to move away from Adobe Flash if you have not already done so.

TIPS

It is always important to update all of the software you use with the latest security updates and patches as soon as they are available. Numerous hacks and data breaches could have been avoided if individuals as well as companies installed security updates when they became available. Hackers take advantage of the fact that many of us procrastinate installing security software to our great detriment. The major data breach at Equifax that affected 148 million people involved a security flaw in Apache software for which a patch had already been issued months earlier, but Equifax had not yet installed.

Here is a link to a website with alternative plugins you may wish to consider to replace Adobe Flash.
http://alternativeto.net/software/flash-player/

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.”

Scam of the day – September 16, 2020 – Nine Arrested in Smash and Grab Identity Theft Ring

Nine people were recently arrested and charged with 700 smash and grab thefts that lead to a thousand incidents of identity theft at a cost of more than 1.5 million dollars stolen.  Smash and grab is the term used to describe when criminals break into cars and steal personal information left in the cars to use for purposes of identity theft.  Many police departments have  warned people about the danger of leaving wallets, checkbooks and documents with personal information in cars because identity thieves are breaking into cars specifically looking for such items which they then use to make you a victim of identity theft. Additionally, following an automobile accident you should empty your car of all items with personal information before the car is towed to a junk yard or repair shop.  One of the last things people think about following an automobile accident in which their car is damaged is what documents were left in the glove compartment, trunk or elsewhere in the car and yet many people leave incredible amounts of documents with personal information including Social Security numbers that can be used to make the car accident victim a victim of identity theft, as well.  Bank statements, employment applications, W-2s and many other documents containing the car owner’s Social Security number are quite often left in the car and are ready for the picking by savvy identity thieves who will go through cars in junk yards and repair shops for this information.

TIPS

Regular readers of Scamicide may remember the Scam of the day in which I described the problems faced by a woman whose check book was stolen from her unlocked car.  You should never leave important documents in your car.  Cars are important targets for not just car thieves, but also identity thieves who know that many people leave personal documents in their automobiles which can be used to make the car owner a victim of identity theft.  Even if you routinely lock your car, you should never leave documents with personal information in your car as breaking into a locked car is not a particularly difficult task for a determined criminal.

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.”

Scam of the day – September 15, 2020 – Free Online Concert Scam

The Coronavirus pandemic has had a tremendous effect on the entertainment world with movie theaters shuttered until recently and concerts cancelled.  Enterprising musical artists have done a number of free online concerts which have been hardily welcomed by their fans.  As the old saying goes, no good deed goes unpunished and scammers are always taking advantage of everything that people are interested in so it should come as no surprise that scammers are posting phony announcements throughout social media of a wide variety of free concerts. These announcements often include language such as “Free Concert — Sign Up and Let Your Friends Know Too.”  Of course there is no concert.  The scammers are either seeking personal information such as the cell phone number of someone seeking to sign up for the free concert or using the link to the registration page for the concert to trick people into unwittingly downloading malware on to their computers such as ransomware or keystroke logging malware that can lead to identity theft.

Cell phone numbers are particularly valued by scammers both to send phony phishing text messages called Smishing or even to help sophisticated scammers avoid dual factor authentication by being the first step in enabling the scammer to avoid dual factor authentication by tricking your cell phone carrier into transferring your cell phone number to a phone controlled by the scammer through a technique called SIM swapping.  You can read more about SIM swapping in the archives of Scamicide.com

TIPS

Repeat after me, “trust me, you can’t trust anyone.”  Regardless of who appears to be posting these notices of free concerts, you can’t trust them to be accurate.  Even if they are forwarded to you by your real friends, their social media or  or other accounts may have been hacked.  If a performer is going to put on a free concert, the best place to confirm that this is true and to learn what you need to do to watch and listen to the concert is on the artist’s own website, but make sure that you are going to the real performer’s website and not a phony one set up by a scammer.  You also may wish to confirm the concert on the artist’s social media accounts.

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.”

Scam of the day – September 14, 2020 – Car Wrap Scam

In the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, reports are resurfacing of increased instances of the car wrap scam which has been around for a few years.  We have all seen car wraps, which are advertisements for a company wrapped around a car.  For someone looking for some money in return for very little effort, this may seem like a match made in heaven.  But if you are not careful, it could be a match made in scam hell.

Car wrapping is actually legitimate, which is part of the problem.  Scammers exploit legitimate advertising through car wraps by either putting an ad on the Internet or contacting you through a mass email in which they seek people to have their cars used for advertising through this technique called shrink wrapping.  Unsuspecting victims respond to the advertisement and are sent a check for  more than the amount that the victim is to be paid for the service.  The victim is instructed to deposit the check in his or her bank account and wire the rest back to the company.  This is where the scam comes in.  The check that the scammer sends you is a counterfeit.  However, unfortunately, the money that you wire the scammer comes right out of your bank account and is impossible to retrieve.  Recently, in Ohio Tizita Guffy became a victim of the car wrap scam when she responded to an advertisement that told her she wqould be paid $500 a week to drive her car with advertising for Crest toothpaste wrapped around it. She was sent a legitimate appearing check and told to wire $3,000 from the check to the company that would be putting the advertisement on the car and to keep the remainder of the check.  Ms. Guffy waited 24 hours for the check to clear and then wired the money as instructed.  The check sent to Ms. Guffy was, of course, counterfeit and the money she wired from her account was lost forever. This scam of sending you a check for more than what you are to be paid and having you wire the balance is the basis of many different scams.

TIPS

While there are legitimate companies that pay for car wrapping. None of them will ever send you an unsolicited email offering to pay you a specific amount to have your car wrapped.  The legitimate car wrap advertising companies generally pay about $100 per month and they never ask you to pay for the car wrapping.  They tell you where to bring your car to have it wrapped and you don’t pay anything to the wrapper.  Legitimate car wrapping companies always ask for information about your car, how much you drive and where you drive. The FTC warns people about being particularly wary of car wrap opportunities that appear on social media and job boards. They are generally scams.

Always be wary if someone asks you to wire money to them as a part of a business transaction.  Scammers do this all the time because it is quick and impossible to stop.  In addition, even if you get what appears to be a certified check and wait a few days for the check to clear, you will still be out of luck because it takes weeks for a check to fully clear.  Banks are required by law to give you conditional credit after a few days, which means that ultimately when the check turns out to be counterfeit, the credit is removed from your account and if you have, in turn, made checks or wired funds from you account assuming the check was legitimate, you are out of luck and will have lost your own money.  A check sent to you by someone with whom you are doing business for whatever purpose that is more than the amount you are owed that comes with a request for you to send the overpayment amount back is always a scam.

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.”

Scam of the day – September 13, 2020 – Student Loan Debt Relief Scammers Settle FTC Lawsuit

I have written often about phony student loan debt relief companies and with good reason.  More than forty-two million Americans have student loans with an outstanding balance of more than 1.4 trillion dollars so it is no surprise that scammers are focusing their attention on these students and former students through scams that falsely promise to provide debt relief.  Last November I told you that the Federal Trade Commission sued Arete Financial Group alleging that Arete charged illegal upfront fees for their services. However, according to the FTC, Arete’s crimes did not end there. In its lawsuit, the FTC alleged that Arete would change their clients’ Federal Student Aid (FSA) login ID, password and contact information with their clients’ loan servicer which effectively eliminated contact between the borrowers and their loan servicers.  This enabled Arete, according to the FTC, to  place the borrower’s loans into temporary forbearance or deferment status without the borrower even being aware of this.  Thus when the borrowers sent their payments to Arete that they were told would be credited toward their loans, the money actually was kept by Arete.  Some of Arete’s clients saw their loans become delinquent and their income tax refunds garnished to pay for overdue loan payments.  The victims of the scam also lost the money they paid to Arete that was intended to be applied toward their loans.  Now Arete has settled with the FTC and as a part of the settlement will be paying funds to the FTC to distribute to the victims of the scam.  Arete is insolvent so the funds they will be paying will not approach the amount lost by its victims.  Still, it will be paying at least $835,000 to the FTC which will oversee the return of funds to victims.  I will report to you when a compensation program is set up and let you know how to make your claim.

In October of 2017 the Federal Trade Commission, working with the Attorneys General of eleven states, launched what it cleverly calls, Operation Game of Loans to jointly target these various student loan scams.   Some scammers promise dramatic reductions of debt of 50% or more in return for upfront fees of between $500 and $2,500.  Often these scam companies have names that make it appear that they are endorsed by the federal government in order to trick people into trusting them.  Another student loan scam involves promises related to consolidating student loans.  Often the scammers represent that they are associated with the U.S. Department of Education although the Department of Education does not associate with private lenders in regard to student loan consolidation.  These scammers also charge significant fees for their student loan consolidation services when the truth is that there is no fee for legitimate student loan consolidation.  It is also important to remember that consolidating your student loans does not lower your interest or monthly payment.  Instead, after loan consolidation the student’s monthly payment is equal to a weighted average of the interest rates on the student’s current loans.

TIPS

The old adage still is true.  If it sounds too good to be true, it probably isn’t true.  Many of these student loan debt relief scammers promise quick loan forgiveness, which is unrealistic.  In addition, you should never pay any upfront fees for student loan debt relief assistance.  Those fees are illegal and are a sure indication that you are being scammed.  Also, remember my motto, “trust me, you can’t trust anyone.”  Don’t trust scammers merely because they use names that sound like they are affiliated with the government.  You also should never share your FSA ID with anyone.

For information you can trust about federal student loan repayment option, go to https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/repay-loans .  There you can learn about loan deferments, forbearance, repayment and loan forgiveness programs and there is never an application fee.  If you owe private student loans, contact your loan servicer directly.  You can also look into student loan refinancing rather than consolidating the loans.  Refinancing student loans can result in a lower interest rate.  For more information about student loans go to https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/1028-student-loans  Here is a link to a calculator that can help you determine whether you will save more by consolidating or refinancing student loans.https://www.makelemonade.co/calculators/student-loan-consolidation-refinancing-calculator/

Here also is a link to an FTC video that explains student loan scams and what you can do to protect yourself.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7TjSI4Q6ztQ

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.”

Scam of the day – September 12, 2020 – Department of Justice Issues Warning About Impostor Scams

Impostor scams have long been among the most lucrative for scammers.  While there are many variations of this scam, the most common variations have involved scammers calling their intended victims on the telephone posing as some governmental agency such as the IRS or the Social Security Administration.  The scammer then, under a wide variety of pretenses, demands an immediate payment by gift cards, credit card or wired funds. Being asked to pay by gift cards is a definite indication that the call is a scam since no governmental agency requests or accepts payments by gift cards.   Alternatively, the scammer demands the victim supply the phony governmental agent with personal information such as your Social Security number which will then be used for identity theft purposes.

Recently the Department of Justice issued a warning  about identity thieves calling unsuspecting victims posing as Department of Justice investigators and asking for personal information from their victims that they use to make them victims of identity theft.

TIPS

As I have often reminded you, through the simple technique of “spoofing” it is very easy for a scammer to manipulate your Caller ID to make a call coming to you appear legitimate when it is not.  Therefore you can never truly trust your Caller ID.  Trust me, you can’t trust anyone. Even though your Caller ID may indicate that the call is coming from the Department of Justice, the call is coming from a scammer.  Never provide personal information to anyone who calls you unless you have absolutely confirmed that it is legitimate.  If you think that the call may be legitimate, you can call the the real Department of Justice to confirm it is a scam at 202-514-2000.

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.”

Scam of the day – September 11, 2020 – Keto Diet Pill Scams

Weight loss scams are among the most common scams and with good reason. Many people want to lose weight and most of the scam products promise to do that for you easily without diet or exercise. The unfortunate truth is that there is no magic formula for quick and easy weight loss without diet and exercise, but scammers continue to prey on people looking for that quick solution to their weight difficulties.  Recently a Scamicide reader forwarded to me a misleading advertisement for Keto diet pills that promised to enable the user to lose huge amounts of weight without any particular change of diet or exercise, which is basically impossible.  The Keto diet is a popular, but quite controversial high-fat, low-carbohyrdrate diet.  Some advertisments for Keto diet pills falesly tout their endorsement by the cast of the popular television show “Shark Tank.”  Other celebrities falsely used in Keto ads include Chrissy Teigen who has strongly denounced the ads for using her name without her permission.  Actually her exact words were “this is completely made up bull***t.”

Making the problem even worse, many of the sellers of such phony diet pills take your credit card or debit card and then charge you for products and services you never ordered.  In 2014, the Federal Trade Commission, speaking about this type of fraud warned “The reality:  The company can’t support — or deliver on — those weight loss claims.  If you give your credit or debit account number, you get charged $60 to $210 every month — and it’s almost impossible to get a refund.  On top of that, you get enrolled in offers you didn’t ask for — with more monthly charges.”

TIPS

As for weight loss products in general, the truth is that there are no quick fixes when it comes to weight loss and you should be wary of any product that promises you can lose tremendous amounts of weight quickly without dieting or exercise.  You should also be wary of any weight loss product that is sold exclusively either over the Internet or through mail-order advertisements. The best course of action is to ask your physician about the effectiveness of a particular weight loss product or program before you reduce your wallet in an effort to reduce your waistline.

Also, victims of this type of fraud who paid with a credit card were generally successful in having the charges removed, but those people who used their debit cards lost the money they paid to the scammers. As I often remind you, the fraud protection you get when you use your credit card for purchases is excellent, but the fraud protection you get when you use your debit card is tremendously limited.  Limit your use of your debit card to ATMs.

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.”

Scam of the day – September 10, 2020 – School Children Targets of Identity Thieves

This is the beginning of a school year unlike any other, but one thing that remains the same is the risk of school age children becoming victims of identity theft.  Identity thieves will steal the identity of a child and then run up large debts using the credit of the child, who generally does not become aware that his or her identity has been stolen until he or she reaches older teen years when he or she might first apply for a car loan or financial aid for college.  Identity theft of children’s identities is a huge national problem.  According to a study by the Carnegie Mellon CyLab, children are more than 51 times more likely to become a victim of identity theft than adults.  Children are also the most common victims of “synthetic identity theft.”  Many people are not familiar with the term “synthetic Identity theft,” but it poses a significant threat to many people particularly children.  Synthetic identity theft occurs when a criminal takes information from a variety of sources to create a new identity to take out loans, purchase goods and services, or fraudulently obtain credit cards.  Synthetic identity thieves combine real and fake information to form a new fictional person.  They may use your Social Security number and combine it with the name, address and phone number of someone else.  The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has said that synthetic identity theft is the fastest growing type of identity theft.  Children are the most common victims of synthetic identity theft and it is often many years before the problem is discovered.

In synthetic identity theft criminals then build the credit score of the synthetic identity by having people use the credit cards and make regular payments until the credit score of the new synthetic identity is high enough for the ultimate payoff, which is referred to as the “bust out.”  In the bust out phase, the identity thief uses the new synthetic identity to either make large purchases or take out big loans that are never paid back.  Some synthetic identity thieves will take years to build the synthetic identity theft credit score by making payments on cell phone accounts, car loans and more.

TIPS

Some telltale signs of synthetic identity theft include being contacted about an account that you never opened or a debt that you didn’t incur.  Also, look for aliases listed on your credit report that you do not use.  A dramatic lowering of your credit score coupled with a lack of negative information on your primary credit reports are further indications of synthetic identity theft.  The reason that your primary credit report will not show negative information due to synthetic identity theft is because when a criminal uses your Social Security number, but doesn’t use your name, the negative information caused by their actions does not appear on your regular credit report.  Instead, the information is added to a sub-file of your credit report which will, however, cause your credit score to drop tremendously.

If you do find out that you or your children have become a victim of synthetic identity theft, notify each of the three credit reporting agencies, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion of the crime and ask them to investigate and remove the false information from your sub-files.

Parents also should, as much as possible, try to limit the places that have their child’s Social Security number and become familiar with the Family Educational Rights Privacy Act which helps you protect the privacy of your child’s school records and enables you to opt out of information sharing by the school with third parties.  You also should freeze the credit reports of your children.

Here are the links to information about how to freeze your child’s credit reports at each of the three major credit reporting agencies.

https://www.transunion.com/credit-freeze

https://www.experian.com/blogs/ask-experian/requesting-a-security-freeze-for-a-minor-childs-credit-report/

https://www.equifax.com/personal/education/identity-theft/freezing-your-childs-credit-report-faq/

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.com was recently cited by the New York Times as one of three best 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.”

Scam of the day – September 9, 2020 – More Delivery Scams

During the social distancing and quarantining that has become the hallmark of the Coronavirus pandemic, deliveries by UPS, Federal Express, Amazon and others have become the primary way many of us are doing all or almost all of our shopping.  Scammers are always taking advantage of whatever is popular with people and there is no shortage of scams related to deliveries following online purchases.  I have written about many of these, but there are always new ones popping up.

Recently many people are reporting receivng text messages that appear to come from UPS or Federal Express indicating that it is necessary for you to update your delivery preferences.  In order to do so you are asked to click on a link and provide personal information.  Unfortunately, if you click on the link one of two things will happen.  Either you will be taken to a page where you provide your personal information to a criminal who will use the information to make you a victim of identity theft or you will download dangerous malware, such as ransomware, merely by clicking on the link.

TIPS
If you receive an email  or text message from a company that asks you to click on a link or download an attachment, you should hesitate to do so, particularly if it appears bogus.  Never click on any link in an email or text message until you have confirmed that it is legitimate.  It is important to remember that through a technique called “spoofing,” scammers can make a phone call appear to come from any telephone number that they wish.  Also, although it is important to have security software on all of your electronic devices, you can’t totally rely on your security software to protect you from the latest forms of zero-day defect malware for which there has not yet been issued a security update.   If you have the slightest thought that an email or text message asking you to click on a link may be legitimate, rather than click on the link, go to the website of the company, which in the case of Federal Express is www.fedex.com or call them directly at 1-800-463-3339.  Also, if you wish to track a Federal Express delivery go directly to the website of Federal Express rather than click on any link in an email or text message that purports to take you to the Federal Express website.  Similarly, you can do the same for other delivery services.

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.”

Scam of the day – September 8, 2020 – Wells Fargo Phishing Email

Here is another good example of a phishing email that is presently being circulated. It was sent to me by a Scamicide reader who received it.  It makes for compelling reading, but it is a scam.  Phishing emails, by which scammers and identity thieves attempt to lure you into either clicking on links contained within the email which will download malware or providing personal information that will be used to make you a victim of identity theft, are nothing new.  They are a staple of identity thieves and scammers and with good reason because they work.  As always, they lure you by making it appear that there is an emergency that requires your immediate attention or else dire consequences will occur.  Copied below is a new phishing email  presently being sent to unsuspecting people that appears to come from Wells Fargo.  This particular one came is not particularly sophisticated.  It does not contain a Wells Fargo logo and the email address from which it was sent obviously has no connection to Well Fargo. I have disabled the link which was found if you clicked on the word “Verify.”   If you hovered your mouse over the actual link, you would see that it would not take you to Wells Fargo.

Here is the email.

From: WELLSFARG0 BANK1NG 0NL1NE [mailto:fydvfbdf@bddfdh.com]
Sent: Friday, September 4, 2020 12:57 PM
Subject: Security Alert

Multiple Failed Sign-in Attempt

User IP:  63.229.653.88
Date: 09/04/2020, Time: 09:55 AM (GMT), location: Russia
Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; Trident/7.0; RV: 11.0).

Status: Access Locked, Verification Required, Click Verify Below;

VERIFY

WellsFargo Service Team.
Copyright ©2020

TIPS

Legitimate emails from your bank would include the last four digits of your account and include your name.  This email had neither.   Often such phishing emails originate in countries where English is not the primary language and the spelling and grammar are poor. However this one appears grammatically correct. Obviously, if you are not a Wells Fargo customer, you will recognize immediately that this is a scam.

As with all phishing emails, two things can happen if you click on the links provided.  Either you will be sent to a legitimate looking, but phony webpage where you will be prompted to input personal information that will be used to make you a victim of identity theft or, even worse, merely by clicking on the link, you will download keystroke logging malware that will steal all of your personal information from your computer and use it to make you a victim of identity theft.  If you receive an email like this and think it may possibly be legitimate, merely call your bank or other institution from which the email purports to originate at a telephone number that you know is accurate and you will be able to confirm that it is a scam.

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.”

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