Dozens of Gmail users were said to have been exposed to a state-sponsored phishing campaign recently in Russia. As per a BleepingComputer report, the campaign was spotted in late September and accounts for a ‘larger than usual batch of government-backed attack notifications’ that Google sends to targeted users every month. Also Read - Gmail not working for many in India, users unable to send or receive emails
Shane Huntley, the head of Google’s cybersecurity division TAG (Threat Analysis Group) back then stated that 100 percent ‘were automatically classified as spam and blocked by Gmail.’ However, email scams have existed for a long time and with hackers updating their tactics it becomes difficult for the commoners to protect themselves against phishing scams and identity theft. Also Read - Gmail, YouTube, Google Maps stop working on these Android phones: Check the list, what to do now
Surprisingly, even the big fish like Outlook isn’t spared from such fraudulent activities. As per a Which? Conversations finding, email scam-hit Gmail and Outlook with fraudsters scamming users by sending fishy links that impersonate supermarkets. These phishing emails coated in official-looking branding tend to trick users into clicking on the link. Also Read - Google, YouTube, Gmail suffered massive outage last night: Here’s what happened
While these fake emails tag lucrative gifts or promo rewards, users who receive the email are required to participate in a short survey to get those ‘nonexistent gift cards’ which then leads to scamming money and private data as well. Although it isn’t easy to stop these spams from getting flooded to your mailbox in a day, there are a few simple steps that can be taken to avoid getting scammed.
How to avoid email scams in Gmail, Outlook, etc
-Use spam filtering tools offered by your email service. If spam messages somehow pass through the filter, you can still mark them as spam.
-It’s always advised not to publicly expose your personal email address on websites as spammers are on the active lookout for email ids on a public website.
-In case any unknown link pop-up on your mailbox, it’s better to delete it right away.
-Avoid participating in unknown surveys and do not provide credentials especially email id and password.
-Use caution while opening email attachments even it is from a colleague or a friend.
How to report online scams
You can open your email account then open the spam message, click on reply and then on report phishing, and then hit the send option.