Our Experience With Scam Emails
We’ve had enough of scam emails…
Once again, one of our clients successfully identified and reported a scam email that they received this week.
Like always, it looked legitimate enough. If they’d clicked on the link, it probably would have caused the business to fall into a problematic situation: either a data breach, or hundreds of pounds spent on IT solutions to clear their systems of viruses.
Fortunately – the client wasn’t caught out by the scam email and everything ended ok!
As an accountancy firm, we hear this happening a lot. Scam emails are often sent by people, disguising themselves as HMRC or, more recently, the software we use: Xero.
Here’s an example of the scam email our client received this week:
Information blurred for client confidentiality
As you can see, the email looks like it’s from a reputable source; Xero.
Xero is our accountancy software of choice, we specialise in it, and so most of our clients use Xero. That’s why we’re writing this blog – for our clients sake.
We feel like we have a duty of care to make them aware that an email like this is in circulation – but also, we want to help anyone else who uses Xero or fears that one day they’ll be caught out by scam emails.
We want to show you how to never get caught out by a scam email
Over time, inbox spam filters have gotten better, but some of these emails still slip into your inbox – which, probably has an adverse effect – because it makes these emails seem more legitimate.
We get complacent about how successful the spam filters are and the unfortunate truth is that we all have to be overly cautious nowadays.
Always Check The Scam Email’s Sender
In the example email – it’s quite obvious that the sender isn’t from Xero.
A quick google search shows us that idealflatmate.co.uk seem to be a reputable company. Their social media pages are legitimate – they are not trying to scam people for anything. They probably don’t even know this is happening.
The likely cause is that another company has purchased their email address from a list of emails used by spammers – this is called spoofing. Bots trawl through websites and forums for email addresses to sell these details onto others who will send their scam emails.
Always Check Who The Scam Email Is Addressed To
Most of these emails will never address you directly – in our example, the email is addressed to the client’s email address, rather than their actual name.
This is a big giveaway that the sender doesn’t have any actual information about you, except the email address. As a Xero user, Xero would 100% address you by your name – as they have this data on file.
How To Never Get Caught Out By A Scam Email
In order to never get caught out by a scam email – you have to follow the only proven method: to check your emails thoroughly and contact the company who you believe has sent you the email if you are really unsure (in a separate email, or phone call).
As mentioned before – many, if not most, of these emails will end up in your junk folder: where they belong and where they will never be seen.
But it’s always possible that one will slip into your inbox, and you can guarantee that it will be disguised as a reputable company/website that you visit often.
Always be on guard – and be overly cautious when it comes to clicking links in emails.
What’s your experience with scam emails? Comment below. We hope this helps!