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Phishing Emails

A serious blog item for a change... we've all had phishing emails - that pretend to come from somewhere like your bank, or Amazon, or an airline or parcel delivery firm.  Usually you can tell at a glance that something's not quite right but every now and again you get one that's a cut above the rest, something that looks real.  How do you tell for sure whether it's a real message or just another scam?

Well, a phishing email wants to take you to its evil master's website and you can bet that won't be amazon.com, or barclays.co.uk!  When you mouse over a link in an email Outlook (and other mail programs) pops up a little 'tool tip' window to tell you where the link is pointing to and if that isn't where you think it should point to then you've just received a phishing email.  Genuine messages from Amazon or your bank, if they contain links at all, will point to the real website.

Pay particular attention to the domain part of the link, as some phishers are cunning and call their web pages something like barclays.co.uk.html so at first glance you might think the link is pointing to the right place but the 'html' (or php or whatever) part of the page file name gives the game away, and nearer the beginning of the link address you'll find the real domain name!

page last updated: 02/12/2014

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