Common Email Scams

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 6,684
    Consumer activist Tom Antion reviews some of the most common email scams and how to avoid them.

    Tom Antion: Hi! I am Tom Antion. Today, I am going to discuss some of the most common email scams. First is phishing; that's P.

    H.

    I.

    S.

    H.

    I.

    N.

    G. Phishing is where you get an email with bait in it, they are trying to reel you in.

    The bait is designed to look like a legitimate entity you know like Wells Fargo Bank or PayPal or Amazon.

    com. When you click on click in the email, you may be asked for personal information that will be used to either steal your identity or drain your bank account or you may download a virus that steals information from your computer and forwards it to the scammer. Never, never, never click on a link in an email unless you're expecting it.

    Another popular email scam tells you that you've won a national lottery or sweepstakes. The organizers of this scam tell you that you must pay the taxes in advance and that you will get your winnings several days after they receive the tax payment. Of course there is no lottery and you just sent your money to a scammer and you will never see it again. Did you ever hear the saying; a friend in need is a friend indeed. One of the latest rounds of email scams is where you get an email from someone you know and it is from their email address.

    The email tells you they were on vacation in some foreign country and oh no! They were robbed. They ask you to send them some emergency money which they will promptly pay you upon their return. Well that ain't going to happen. Your friend's email got hacked, your friend is fine and probably sitting home and watching sci-fi heroes. If you send the money, the scammer played you for your good nature. If you see any email like that, don't send the money. Contact your friend immediately and tell them to broadcast the real message to everyone on their contact list and then change their email password.

    Bottom-line folks, you've got to be darn careful when responding to or clicking on anything in unexpected emails.