The online auction and e-commerce website eBay is often used in phishing scams. In a recent one, an email claims that shoppers owe hundreds of dollars for a purchase that is obviously incorrect and will probably cause an initial gasp. But don’t despair. The scammers are there to help. Included in the email is, of course, a link that supposedly goes to a website where a resolution can be found. It all looks real and could fool even those with the sharpest eyes. However, it is indeed a fake.

  • Don’t be lured into a panic by email messages such as this one. Often, the scammers are counting on you to react just that way and click links without a thought. That’s when they get you. If something is so important that you cannot take some time to consider action before taking any, the sender would contact you in a way that it is reasonable to expect an immediate response; such as by phone. Even then, don’t give out details without making sure the caller is whom he or she claims.
  • If you are ever asked to verify information, modify details in your account, or if you want to check on status, go directly into your account and check the messages section. Don’t trust a link, especially if you are intending to verify payment or other sensitive information.
  • When going to websites, use previously bookmarked links or very carefully type the address into your browser. This will prevent you from becoming a victim of a typosquatting, or domain jacking, attack. These happen when cybercriminals put up websites with addresses that are so close to well-known websites that are often visited. The criminals anticipate typos and those are what direct unsuspecting victims to their websites.

Always keep it in the back of your mind that phishers are out there trying to get your information. Being aware that it’s happening is a strong leap forward to keep it from catching you.

Donovan B. Fox © Copyright 2017