Regular readers here are smart people – very smart people. Over the last few years I’ve come to know many of them. And, none better than John Bent – my good buddy from the UK. In fact, John is the third leading commenter on this site.
I don’t mind saying, that I look forward with some anticipation to John’s comments – he is, in a sense, a writer in disguise. And, a good one at that. But, best of all, John’s comments invariable hold more than a nugget of cyber wisdom.
The following comment (from earlier today), sets out how John – a super user – responded to a PayPal account phishing email. There’s a strong lesson to be learned here – for all of us.
Re:https: Fake “confirm PayPal Account” email leads to phishing.
The version I received told me that my account had been changed to “limited” status, because of “suspected invalid use by a third party”. The cheek of these people!
I have to say it was a very good imitation, so I took it seriously enough to open a new browser window to check my account directly, NOT via the link in the email. Surprise, surprise – no mention of my account being limited.
While I was on their site, I found the address to forward suspected phishing emails to; I know, I ended a sentence with a preposition, so sue me. I always make a point of forwarding these emails to the appropriate address; a link to this can usually be found on the home page, not always easily.
I guess they do not want to highlight this problem too clearly, probably regarding it as the customer’s problem rather than theirs; how’s that for customer service?
If I still had any doubts, the sender’s email address was a complete giveaway; no mention of PayPal anywhere. One final thing, if this kind of email is genuine, it usually addresses the account holder by name and will NEVER ask you to click on a link and input sensitive information.
The sidebar on this site sets out the following – “Comments are an important feature of this Blog.” John’s comment is a perfect example of how one reader’s comment can be a teaching moment for others.
Thank you John for taking time to fill in the blanks.
Updated – July 30, 2012.
Heads up on another attempted PayPal scam. This one was confirmation of a supposed payment to Skype of £46.49 gbp. Thoughtfully a link was provided so that I can raise a dispute if I have “issues” with the payment. This is, of course, a devious way to harvest your login details so that the scamscum can actually take money from your account
Of course I know I’ve never paid anything for Skype and a quick check on my account confirmed this.