What is a Phishing Scam
Beware of fraudulent emails and Web sites that masquerade as messages from familiar institutions. By tricking you into disclosing your Social Security Number, PIN number, a password, or an account number, identity thieves can drain your bank account or run up bills on your credit card.
Caller ID scams are basically phishing via the telephone. A call can be made to appear to come from any phone number, just as 'from' email addresses can be "spoofed." The end goal is the same.
Avoid Phishing Scams & Protect Your Identity
The best ways to avoid becoming a victim are:
- Never disclose personal information in response to an unsolicited email or phone inquiry
- Never click on the link in the email
- Always access the Web site by manually typing in the Web address in a browser
The University admistration issued an email warning in 2008 to all campus members about Phishing scams. The U of U will never ask you for any personal information via email. To identify a notice as being officially from the University of Utah, look for the following:
1. [UofU] or U OF U in the subject line of the email
2. As a reminder all University-wide approved emails have [UofU] in the subject line as well as a footer indicating who approved the distribution of the message. Those sent using the Campus Alert System come from U ofU [EmergencyAlert@utah.edu] or U of U [CampusAlert@utah.edu].
3. Verify that the same computer-security or information technology-related notice is posted at http://www.secureit.utah.edu/notices/index.html
For more information on such scams, see this Federal Trade Commission Consumer alert and this Washington State Office of the Attorney General "Phishing" article. You can report suspected Phishing scams by sending an email to email@example.com or by visiting the Federal Trade Commission website.