Fraud is not always easy to recognize at a glance. So if you are planning to transfer money or enter card details, it is better to spend a little more time and effort on a more detailed check of emails and websites. Below, we’ve put together nine tips to help you do just that.
- Check your email address
Before clicking on links in an email or replying to it, take a closer look at the sender’s address. It consists of two parts: the name and the actual email address. You can specify whatever name you like – scammers often use this and enter the name of the organization they pretend to be in this field.
But replacing the address itself – the one with the dog – is much more difficult, so this is where attackers can get through. In most fraudulent emails, the address will either have nothing to do with the name of the company they are pretending to be, or will be similar to the real one, but not identical to it – with one or more characters replaced (for example, the letter “o” with the number “0”) , some extra words in the domain, and so on.
Did you notice typos and inconsistencies, or did you see that the sender’s e-mail is an incomprehensible abracadabra? Do not reply to the letter, do not click on the links, but it is best to immediately send it to Spam.
- Study the links in the email
If the email contains hyperlinks or buttons with an inscription like “Get a discount”, “Pick up a gift”, “More” and so on, which you are hinted to click on, then you should immediately check what is hidden behind them.
If you hover over a link or button, you will see the address of the web resource that the email creators want to send you to. Find the official website of the company through a search engine and compare its URL with the link from the letter. Always open these links with the use of vpn gratis, to hide your original location. If the addresses are different — for example, the link from the letter contains a different domain (say .org or some .xyz instead of the normal .ru or .com), then you should not open the page.
At the same time, while the official website is at hand, it makes sense to open it and see if discounts, gifts or promotions from the letter are mentioned there. If there is no data about special offers there, then most likely scammers have contacted you.
- Look at the site’s security certificate
Some characters are so similar that the substitution is almost invisible to the naked eye. Therefore, we offer another quick way to check who owns the site – after you have gone there. Let’s look at the example of Google Chrome, in other browsers the names of menu items may differ slightly.
- Click on the padlock to the left of the URL.
- In the window that appears, select Secure connection.
- Click on Valid Certificate.
- Make sure that the company that owns the site is listed next to Issued to.
A “padlock” is a sign that data to and from this site will be transmitted securely, encrypted, and that an independent organization has certified this with a certificate. We just watched him. In principle, it is not difficult to obtain such a certificate, but, fortunately, not in the name of a foreign company. Therefore, if the name of the organization is indicated in the certificate, then it can usually be trusted (however, you should make sure that it is correct).
What if there is no lock? This means that the data is not protected, and it can be intercepted not only by the site owners, but also by third parties, so entering confidential information on such a site is definitely not worth it.
- Check who registered the site and when
You can get additional information about the site using a special whois service. It provides data on all existing IP addresses and domain names. Enter the address of the page you are interested in in the appropriate field and check when and to whom the domain was registered.
The domain registration date can be found in the Registered On line. If the site pretends to be the official resource of a well-known company with a long history, and according to the service, the domain is only a couple of months old, then it is very likely that you are on a scam page.
It is also useful to look at who the domain is registered to. Owner contact information can be found in the Registrant Contact section. For sites of serious companies, at least the name of the organization will be indicated there, and often also its address, phone number and other data.
If the site pretends that it belongs to a large company, but in the field that indicates who the domain is registered to, you see only the inscription Private Person (private person), then you should not trust the resource. Just in case, let’s clarify: there is nothing wrong with the fact of registering a domain by an individual, but it is extremely suspicious when the site claims that it belongs to a huge corporation.