Another phishing scam has been making the rounds lately, filling our inboxes with unwanted and malicious spam, pretending to be from a reputable source. The latest in cyber scams seems to be targeting PayPal account holders, telling them that their accounts have been temporarily blocked, and the only way to undo it is to click on a link in the email to reset their account.
With most of us doing shopping online this year, we need to be extra careful when receiving messages about entering payment details, as it can be easy to mistake a scam for something connected to an online payment we’ve made. Here, we’ll discuss what the latest PayPal scam is and the best tips to avoid falling for it.
How Does The PayPal Scam Work?
The latest PayPal phishing scam is an email that explains you have a problem with your PayPal account, and until you can help resolve the issue, your account is going to be temporarily blocked. In the body of the email, there is a link to click on and re-activate your account. After clicking on the spam link, it will take you to a fake webpage that asks you to fill out your PayPal account details. The fake webpage has tracking cookies enabled, which allows the cyber criminals to track your keystrokes and aims to steal your login details.
Immediately, if you’ve made any recent payments using your PayPal account, you’re going to naturally be concerned and think the email notification is legitimate. The email itself will also replicate the PayPal brand and look very similar to system emails you would have previously received from PayPal, making it an easy scam to fall for.
Tips To Avoid Falling For This PayPal Scam
Unfortunately, phishing scams are on the rise and so it’s important to stay vigilant and know what the signs of a phishing scam are so you can avoid falling for one.
Here are some sure signs that an email might be a scam:
- The email message contains spelling and grammatical errors.
- The email won’t be personally addressed to you and will likely contain a generic introduction like “dear valued customer.”
- The email message usually asks you to provide personal or financial information, such as passwords or account details.
- There is usually a link in the email which takes you to a fake webpage.
- Sometimes the message will give you a contact number to call and tell you the issue needs to be “urgently” resolved.
- Check the email sender address. The name might be displayed as PayPal, but the address itself will be something different and not from paypal.com.
How To Protect Your Vulnerable Information
If you think you’ve received a phishing email, there are some steps you can take to ensure your information stays protected:
- Do not click on any links until you’re sure it’s from a verified source.
- Check the common scams page on the PayPal website to see if the email you received sounds similar to the ones reported there.
- Do not give out any personal information. No reputable financial service provider, such as PayPal, would ask you for your account details in an email.
- If you do click on a link, always be sure to check that the web page is secure before entering any sensitive information.
- Trust your instincts. If something sounds too good to be true, then it most likely is a scam.
- Delete the email immediately.
- Contact your financial service provider using the phone number on the back of your bank card to confirm if the email request is legitimate or not.
- Report the email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Keeping Up With The Latest Scams By Reading Anti Fraud News
The best weapon against online scammers is staying up-to-date with the latest online scams so you can be aware if a phishing scam comes your way. If you or someone you know has been a victim of an online scam, be sure to report it to your local police or to the Internet Crime Complaint Page so you can help stop other people from falling victim to the same scam.