The old “Due to the congestion in all Gmail users and removal of all unused Gmail Accounts” scam, is making a reappearance. This scam has been around for years, and every so often it makes its way back.
This occasional reappearance tells me one thing – this scam pays off for the cyber-criminals who are behind it. Since new users are continuously signing on to the Internet, they are essentially a new crop of potential victims.
To an inexperienced user, this could look like an official email, and the enclosed link makes it simple to get this problem solved with just a mouse click. What could be easier than that?
If you receive an email that is supposedly from “Gmail Service Centers”, and it addresses you in any way other than your name (Dear Valued Member, for example), it’s a scam. Google is not likely to forget your name, right?
At one and the same time, the following email purportedly from PayPal, is making the rounds once again. Similar to the Gmail scam it opens with a generic salutation – in this case, “Dear PayPal Member”.
PayPal is familiar with this type of scam, and has issued the following warning:
“PayPal will never send an email with the greeting “Dear PayPal User” or “Dear PayPal Member.” Real PayPal emails will address you by your first and last name or the business name associated with your PayPal account. If you believe you have received a fraudulent email, please forward the entire email—including the header information – to firstname.lastname@example.org”.
Be kind to your friends, relatives, and associates who are new computer users and let them know about this type of scam. In that way, it raises the level of security for all of us.
Advise them to:
Consider every email, telephone call, or text message requesting confirmation of personal and financial information as a scam.
Not open emails that come from un-trusted sources.
Not run files received via email, without making sure of their origin.
Not click links in emails. If they come from a known source, to type them on the browser’s address bar. If they come from an un-trusted source, to simply ignore them, as they could redirect to a web site designed to download malware.
Keep their computer protected by installing a security solution and keeping it up-to-date.
Report suspicious e-mails as Spam.
To see how cyber criminals target new users, and new email accounts read “Email Spammers Are Smarter Than You Think”, on this site.
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