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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Phishing Emails Increase!

Reports continue to increase in the number of "phishing" emails! 

These emails attempt to obtain your personal or account information by pretending to be a reputable company.  Maybe even a company with whom you do business or have an account, such as an internet service provider or a bank.  These emails ask you to reply by verifying your account information.  They look very convincing with fancy formatting and the company logo.  Don't be tricked!

As general policy, reputable companies do not ask members to supply or verify Member ID or password information in email communications.  Yes, if you give a business your email address, you're going to get email from them.  BUT, this is where you pay close attention.... those occasional email messages requesting updates to personal or payment information will always direct you to a secure web site.  These sites require you to login in to access your account information and make changes. (Secure sites are designated by an 's' after the "http" in the address bar and a lock icon at the bottom of the screen.) NEVER reply to an email message with this information or click on a link inside a suspicious email. 

What to do?
  • Get out your bill and look at the web site address provided in any billing statements from the company
  • Check out the request online by logging into a secure website (https)
  • Type the URL in your navigation bar - never click on links provided in emails
  • Call the company directly
  • Check out potential scams online or call the Better Business Bureau in your area
  • Do NOT reply to the email and do NOT provide your account information or password

If you have any doubt of a message's authenticity:
  • File a complaint with the governments Internet Crime Complaint Center at http://www.ic3.gov
  • Contact the company involved in the scam by forwarding the email.  If you received a phishing email about Citibank, you should forward it to Citibank.
  • Fight Identity Theft has email addresses for reporting
    http://www.fightidentitytheft.com/phishing-scams.html 

More information on Identity Theft can be found on
http://www.oklaw.org/

or at this link:
http://www.oklaw.org/link.cfm?2446


We hope you find this information helpful.
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