Read through the 5 types of email scams below and learn how to recognize each kind, and help protect yourself!
Email Scam #1: Verify your account now to avoid it being closed! — This is an actual screenshot of a scam email circulating that several Hotmail users have received asking them to verify their Hotmail account. This is a scam designed to gain access to your Hotmail account so spammers can use it to send out spam.
How to tell it’s a scam?
- It asks for your personal information. No legitimate company, especially Microsoft, will ever ask you to provide you username, password, date of birth and/or country, credit card information, etc via email.
- The email is generally unprofessional or unpolished looking, including:
- Notice the branding (logo & background image) on the mail above is awkward. The header only goes half-way across.
- Random words are capitalized in the email, including: Email, Email User Accounts Owner, User, Accounts and others.
- In the second sentence, the first word of the sentence, “we” is not capitalized.
- There is poor grammar throughout, but especially in the final statement, “Warning!!! Account owner that refuses to update…”
- There is an urgency of response time. This pressures you to feel like you need to make a decision more quickly and do not have time to research the legitimacy of it.
- Signature is incomplete, stating awkwardly: “The Windows Live Hotmail”, not “Windows Live Hotmail” or “The Windows Live Hotmail Team”.
Two other similar scam emails, which are highlighted on snopes.com, I’ve also seen come to my personal Hotmail account:
- Ebay account suspension notices that ask you to verify your account information.
- Paypal needs you to resubmit your credit card and bank account information.