Protect Yourself From Scammers
In the digital age, where information flows seamlessly through the vast expanse of the internet, email has become an indispensable tool for communication. However, with great convenience comes great risk, and email scams have emerged as a threat to individuals and organizations alike. Here is how you can identify, handle and report fraud attempts.
Email Scams are known as the term ‘phishing’. This is when a scammer sends an email or website pop-up pretending to be from a reputable company or organization in order to trick people into sharing personal information, such as passwords and credit card numbers.
Frequently, the sender will utilize scare tactics to extract the information – for instance, the message may claim that if the requested information is not provided, your services will be deactivated or, ironically, that the request is to prevent potential fraudulent account activity. Here is an example of a phishing email purporting to be from Bruce Telecom:
What should I do if I’ve received a suspicious email from Bruce Telecom?
Do NOT respond to the email, open any attachments or click on any links in this email. Instead, forward the email to email@example.com
If you have already responded to a request for a Bruce Telecom username or password, we highly recommend you contact support at 519-368-2000, to have your password changed immediately.
Bruce Telecom will never request your account number or password via email. Any important account changes or communication will occur over the phone or in person. If you are unsure of the legitimacy of any communication you receive from Bruce Telecom, never hesitate to call us, or call us back to verify the information.
What to look for in a scam email
Who is it coming from?
Do you recognize the sender? Why is a company email being send from a gmail, hotmail or yahoo account and not their official email like firstname.lastname@example.org
Who is it being sent to?
Is this email part of a long line of recipients or is it just being sent to you directly?
How relevant is this email to you? Does the subject line sound urgent?
Was the email send during an off time of the day like late hours of the night or very early hours in the morning?
Is the email grammatically correct? A lot of phishing emails contain simple spelling errors. Is it giving you urgent commands? Is it asking you for personal or financial information?
Hyperlinks or Attachements
Does hovering over the hyperlink reveal a suspicious website? Does the email contain unexpected attachments?
Not only is there email scams, but another prominent scam is phone scams.
When a scammer calls or leaves voice messages pretending to be from a reputable company or organization in order to trick people into sharing personal information such as bank details or credit card numbers. “Vishers” may also ask for other forms of payment, such as gift cards to popular retailers.
Often the caller will offer you fake rate plans, lofty incentives, or “free money” if you take their survey or “confirm” your account by providing information like PINs, passwords, or account numbers. On the other hand, they may also threaten to foreclose your mortgage, repossess your car, or arrest you for tax evasion if you don’t give them what they want. In recent years, many have lost thousands of dollars by responding to fraudulent calls claiming to be from Canada Revenue.
What should I do if I’ve received a suspicious phone call from Bruce Telecom?
Do NOT provide personal information to any unsolicited caller. If possible, record the phone number that appeared on your Call Display, and then contact us at 519-368-2000 to report the incident. We will be able to tell you if the call was legitimate.
By remaining vigilant, individuals can protect themselves and those around them from falling victim to these deceitful practices. Regularly scrutinizing emails for suspicious links, unexpected requests for personal information, or unusual sender addresses can go a long way in preventing a potential security breach.
Equally important is the act of reporting any suspicious emails. Many email providers offer reporting mechanisms to help authorities and cybersecurity experts track and neutralize phishing attempts. But there are other recourses available for you to report any scam emails you may receive.
Here are a list of different places you can report scams
You can report online to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centere or report by phone to 1-888-495-8501