- Think twice before opening any email attachment, even if it appears to be from a trusted contact. Email attachments are the primary method through which viruses spread on the Internet.
- It is very easy to forge the FROM address of an email. Don't trust the contents of an email message just because it is from someone you trust.
- Be skeptical of any email sent from a bank or credit card company. Banks and credit card companies will never ask you to verify your account information, password, or other personal information via email.
- Do not open attachments (files paper clipped to messages) on “Order Status” or “Sales Confirmation” emails that you do not recognize. If you have concerns about possible fraudulent charges, you can always call your credit card company or log onto your bank website to verify that your accounts are OK.
- Do not open attachments (files paper clipped to messages) on “Shipping Notice” or “Tracking Notice” emails that you do not recognize. Most Shipping Notice emails will include a tracking number and this number can be typed directly into Google to get tracking information. Neither UPS or Fedex attaches files to any of their Shipping Notice emails.
- Be skeptical of any email from a friend or relative requesting money in an emergency situation. There are few situations in which email would be a better method than phone to contact someone in a true emergency!
- Never send bank account numbers, credit card numbers, social security numbers, or any other personal information through email. While it is possible to intercept email when it is being sent, the biggest risk comes from the “sent item” and “inbox” mail stored on the senders and recipients computers, cell phones, and other devices. If any of these devices are lost, stolen, or compromised by a virus, your personal information could be released.