How do I recognise Dangerous Spam Emails?
The question of spam emails is very important to all email users. We are all used to getting what are basically adverts in our spam folders. ( And sometimes in our main email folders so be careful). They offer us IT Services, cheap products, etc, and in many cases, they are completely harmless. You might even see something you are interested in. Stranger things have happened!
If there is an attachment to one of these spam emails, NEVER open it !!!!! An attachment pretty much guarantees harmful content such as viruses or trojans etc. Even if it from a company you know the name of don’t open it. Go to the company’s main website and have a look at it there. Many spammers use email addresses that make them look genuine so you will open the attachment.
More very common spam emails are from some Doctor/Widow/Solicitor who just so happens to have a patient/husband/client with your exact name and a big heap of money in the bank.
This leads to either
(A) send me money so I can get the big amount of money released for you
(B) I want your passport details so I can get a big amount of money released for you.
If they were genuine then you would be getting a phone call from someone you could do a quick online search for, to ensure they are genuine. A is just after your money while B is also after your identity!
Another common con you will find in your spam emails is the PayPal con. I am sure that most people, either with or without a PayPal account ( remember they send out millions of these), have received an email from ‘PayPal’ saying their account will be frozen if they do not renew their details at the attached link.
PayPal will NEVER email you for details!!! The only email other than receipts that I have received from PayPal was when the card I was using was nearly out of date. Even then it was please log in to your account and add a new one. NOT CLICK ON THIS LINK.
The bank email con is very similar to the PayPal one, in that they are looking for your details.
Never give your bank details through an email. Your bank will NEVER ask you to do this! If in doubt look up your bank phone number and give them a call but don’t give anyone your details until you have positively confirmed 100% that they are genuine. If it is through an email then they are not.
The email lottery spam emails – you have just won between €100,000 and I think €4,000,000 was the most I have seen in a free online lottery when your email address came out. You will end up having to pay a slight handling fee in order to get your money.
There is no lottery!!! This is a con!!! These spammers send out millions of these spam emails in the hope of catching a few gullible people.
The poor website performance spam emails – “Dear Sir, I have been browsing through your website and while it has many fine features it is not ranking where it should be. I can guarantee you a first page Google ranking. etc ”
I am sure many of you recognise the tone of this email. I am after typing it from memory I have received it so many times.
It wasn’t until a short while ago that I found that some businesses were not ignoring these the way I habitually do ( I know my websites are ranking on the first page for many, many keywords ) and in some cases got in contact with the sender to find out why their websites were not ranking. A business I talked to said that since they had done so a foreign company had been ringing daily and they were finding it quite upsetting.
If a genuine company is approaching you in the hope of getting the work of improving your website or your rankings they should have done at least some basic research. You don’t want to be hearing stuff like ‘Not Ranking’ , ‘Poor Conversion Rate’ and similar. They should be able to talk about Page Speeds, Keywords, Images, Headings, etc . Any decent SEO specialist can find all that out and much more without access to your website’s back end.
There is NO SPAM FILTER ON YOUR MOBILE PHONE!!! Never open an attachment on your mobile phone. Wait to open it on your laptop or pc if possible, even if you know the person. This gives your antivirus a chance to defend your computer.
If you follow these rules for the above and apply them to any emails you get that are similar – spammers are always trying to think up new methods to take your money – then you should be able to avoid most nasty surprises. It is unfortunate that email which is so useful to us in our daily lives can be used by people running Worldwide scams. One of the most common calls we receive from our clients is to question us about suspect emails. While we do build spam filters into our website builds some will always get through. Contact us No1 SEO Ireland for advice.