If you’re subscribed to a large number of digital mailing lists, your inbox can quickly become unmanageable and the word “unsubscribe” becomes your new best friend. But not so fast!
Recently, there’s been an uptick in a phishing scam where the bad guys send emails appearing to be a confirmation of your request to unsubscribe from a mailing list. The subject lines of these emails are usually similar to: “Confirm your unsubscribe request,” or “Client #980920318 To_STOP_Receiving These Emails From Us Hit reply And Let Us Know”.
Should you fall for this trick and click the “unsubscribe” email link, it will trigger a "new email" window to appear in your mail client. This new email will be addressed to 15-20 recipients and will contain "Unsubscribe" in the subject line. Don’t click "Send" on that email!
The 15-20 recipients of this email are actually accounts set up for spamming purposes. If you send this email, the spammers will know your email address is a “live one” and they’ll add it to their list. Such lists can be used in other, more lucrative scams.
Follow these tips to avoid scams like this one:
- The bad guys expect you to click and respond without thinking. STAY ALERT! Don’t be a victim.
- NEVER click on links in emails that you weren’t expecting, or that are generally vague and lacking information.
- Never reply to people you don’t know, or weren’t expecting an email from. Even if it appears to be from someone you know, it’s best to pick up the phone and call them to be sure.