Do you know how to spot a scam email? If not you NEED to keep reading!
I know it’s not often that I do a proper grown-up type of post but one of my lovely readers emailed me this week to let me know that she was grateful for one of my posts about saving money because she’d had to tighten her belt after falling for a scam. The circumstances were a bit different to spotting a scam email but it did get me thinking that lots of you might appreciate a bit of help so you know what to look for to be able to spot a scam email and hit delete straight away.
How to spot a scam email!
Check the email address that the email is from and that the URL is correct
Often they’ll be very similar but not identical to the site the email is claiming to be from. It might be something like Amaz0n.co.uk with a number instead of the letter for the ‘o’ or it could be something completely different like in the example below that I’ve just received. Either way, it’s not the exact email address as the company website would indicate so you know to steer clear.
Is the email asking for information?
An email from a bank asking you to log in to ‘update your details’ or letting you know that they’ve frozen your account is likely to be fake. If everything else in the email suggests it could be genuine then call the number on your bank statement or on the back of your card. Do not use contact details from the email.
Are you being asked to open an attachment?
No, No, No! Do not open attachments unless you are 110% sure that the source of them is genuine. This is the quickest way to help a fraudster download a virus onto your device.
Is your name used?
An email starting ‘Dear customer’ or even more obvious, not using a name at all should definitely raise a red flag.
Spelling and grammar mistakes.
An email from a large organisation will have usually been through a bit of a quality checking process before being emailed out so, whilst not a definitive indicator, you should treat any email with grammar or spelling errors with caution.
Poor quality images and formatting.
Again, this one isn’t a definitive guide but more often than not, an email with poor quality images and formatting could be an indicator of a spam email.
If it sounds too good to be true…
Then it probably is! You’re unlikely to have won a prize in a competition you can’t remember ever entering or having an old long-lost relative who’s recently passed away and left you a fortune.
Remember, any reputable company who you’re genuinely dealing with will attempt to contact you by post or by phone as they will probably have your details on record. If you want to check then use a number from your statements/card/Google to give them a call.
Where can you find out more?
I’d definitely recommend doing a bit more reading about scams in general – the more you know, the better you can protect yourself from fraudsters. The best guide I’ve come across is ‘The Little Book of Big Scams‘ which is a comprehensive guide on fraud prevention written by the Thames Valley Police and it explains some of the most common scams around, ranging from the simple to the sophisticated and provides some essential advice to reduce the chances of you being parted from your money.
Don’t miss out on future posts like this – receive updates directly to your inbox by email by adding your email address here and hitting subscribe. You can also follow me on Twitter or BlogLovin and I’d love to see you over on my Facebook page and on Instagram. If you’re interested, you can find out more about me here and while I’ve got your attention, if you’re wondering why some of my posts lately are a little bit less frugal then have a read of this post. 😉
Do your future self a favour – Pin this post for later: