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Spotting and Stopping Spam Emails

Spotting and Stopping Spam Emails
Spam emails are one of the main tools hackers use to access PCs. Neal has written this super helpful guide to highlight some email tricks to watch out for.

Spam emails are extremely annoying and spammers are always trying to find new ways to con you into handing over information, money etc. Unfortunately, even with the best systems in place some can still creep through. But what do you do when that happens? Follow the simple steps below…

Be Suspicious!
This is my number one tip. Emails aren’t particularly secure and spammers are always trying new tricks to get through. If the email sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Don’t be fooled by Branding
One way to try and fool people is through using a company’s branding to look legitimate. However, logos and other graphics can usually be captured by simple engineering or even Google!

Spelling Mistakes
Beware spelling mistakes! Quite a number of spam emails arrive with simple spelling mistakes – that is a big give away.

Don’t Open Attachments
If you’re unsure of an attachment or someone you don’t know has sent you a document you’re unsure of - don’t open it! Scan it or simply ignore it. If it’s urgent they’ll get in touch.

Your Bank will never email you!
“Dear Valued Customer, this is your bank, please send me your card details as we need them.” This type of email is one of the oldest tricks in the book. In all honesty, your bank will never email you asking for information. If you see one of these just delete it or notify the fraud specialists at your bank to prevent it deceiving others.

Don’t click on the link
Increasingly, spam emails arrive from a compromised but legitimate email server, containing a few phrases, a link and no apparent threat. If you hover your curser on the link it will look abnormal and show where the link goes too. It is via this link that the attacker will try to get something onto your computer - don't click on it!

screen shot of spam email
Urgent Emails!!
I’ve heard quite a number of stories where spammers are quite specific in who they target, even going to the trouble of researching finance directors' names. They then email the accounts team demanding they send money quickly with a “sent from my iPhone” signature. If you see this kind of email, I would always ring the person who has supposedly sent it and ask them about it. Also, if it was really that urgent, wouldn’t they ring you rather than email? Any message like this should ring alarm bells straight away.

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