10 email scams to watch out for

Post date: Dec 23, 2009 1:42:39 PM

E-mail scams to watch out for - article from

Date: December 19th, 2009

Author: Debra Littlejohn Shinder

If it seems like you’re getting hit with more email scams than ever, you’re right. Deb Shinder explains what you and your users should watch out for to avoid being duped.

Spam is one thing. It’s annoying to get email messages that are nothing but blatant attempts to sell you something. But other than using up your bandwidth, they don’t really cause you any harm. Email scams are quite another thing. They aren’t trying to sell you something; they’re trying to steal something from you, con you out of or into something, or just scare you.

Email scams have been with us since the Internet went commercial back in the early 1990s. I remember getting those Nigerian scam messages back then. And believe it or not, they’re still around. But scammers have gotten more sophisticated, and some of the more recent email scams are harder to detect — unless you know what you’re looking for.

The holiday season seems to bring even more scammers out of the woodwork, perhaps because the average computer user is more vulnerable this time of the year. We’re busy and in a hurry and may be less likely to notice the signs that a message isn’t legit, and/or we’re in a generous and giving mood and may be more likely to fall prey to a well crafted story that plays on our sympathy.

Let’s look at some of the email scams that are currently going around the Internet and how you (and your users) can recognize them and keep from being victimized by them.

Note: This article is also available as a PDF download.

Read the entire article at: