This document will provide you with information on Phishing in a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) format.
- How do they obtain my email address?
- How can I protect myself from Phishing attacks?
- Why do Phishing emails get sent?
- What can I do to avoid being Phished?
- What should I do if I received one?
- What is Phishing?
- How do I know that I am being Phished?
- Can I report this to anybody?
- I have fallen victim to Phishing, what is next?
Your address can be obtained in multiple ways. Your address may have been in the address book/contact list of someone else who may have been Phished. Phishers also get email addresses from mailing lists and known spam lists.
You can help to protect yourself by filtering spam, don’t trust any unsolicited email, treat email attachments with caution, avoid clicking links in email messages, and install and update security software.
Scammers will send Phishing emails in an attempt to trick you in to giving them your username and password. After they obtain this information they will then send out large amounts of spam and other messages from your email account. They will also have the ability to read your incoming mail in hopes to garnish additional information from you.
Never respond to any emails asking for personal information. If an email is asking you to click on a link, instead, enter the institutions website in your web browser’s address bar. Keep your computer secure by running spyware and antivirus scans regularly.
If you receive a Phishing email the best thing to do would be to delete or flag the message as spam. Do not reply to the message or click on any hyperlinks in the email.
Phishing is a fraudulent attempt to retrieve your personal information or account information. There are several different ways to be Phished. The most common will either ask you to verify your username and password, or direct you to a link that will have you enter your username and password on a site that looks realistic of your normal log in box (example: My PenTeleData Webmail, banks, etc.).
When viewing a potential Phishing message, there are a few key items to look for to check the validity:
- A message from PenTeleData, or most other reputable companies, would not come from Hotmail or another free email account.
- A logo can make the message look authentic, but anyone can copy and paste an image.
- Don’t be fooled just because the sender uses your real name. The message can still be from a stranger across the street, across the country, or around the world.
- An informational email will not ask you to respond. Phishers generally create a sense of urgency for you to reply.
- Click-on links can be fake. In other words, they may not direct you to the website they appear to represent. A hyperlink is a word, group of words, or image that you can click on to jump to a new webpage, document or a new section within the current document. Unless these are clearly stated addresses (and even they can be deceiving), never click on a hyperlink.
- Misspelled words and grammatical errors are often an immediate tip-off that the message is likely a Phishing attempt.
- No respectable organization or company will ask you for your social security number, account numbers, password, or date of birth in an email.
- If the message does not contain alternate contact information, such as a telephone number, that matches your credit card or billing statement, it is likely a scam.
- The URL should match any links in the email. They should reference the same domain name, without any misspellings.
For messages that are not related to your PenTeleData email account please go here.
If you believe you may have fallen victim to a Phishing attempt there are a few steps to help you regain access and secure your account. Scan your computer for spyware and viruses, if anything is found record what was found. Ensure your operating system and browsers are up to date. If the Phishing attempt is regarding your PenTeleData e-mail account, you can visit our "Account Management" page to change your password. Alternatively, you can contact our Customer Service department.