One recent way email scammers have tried stealing people's personal information is by pretending to offer possible job openings to recipients, according to a Purdue News press release.
The method involves the scammer asking the victim to participate in a Google Hangout interview, after which the victim is asked for personal information and has his or her job offer "confirmed."
The release says both the Purdue University Police Department and Information Technology at Purdue want to remind people to be cautious of possible scams.
"The names are legitimate in order to fool people into taking the next requested steps," PUPD Chief John Cox said in the release. "It all looks real."
Those who believe they might be targets of a scam or who have already been scammed are encouraged to contact their local police department.
Chief information officer Greg Hedrick offered the following tips:
Don't get personal.
Purdue doesn't ask for personal data through emails, so any message asking for information like passwords or Social Security numbers shouldn't be trusted.
Don’t be fooled, assess.
If students are concerned about the legitimacy of links in their emails, don't open or click on them, even if the email appears to come from someone you know. If students have doubts, they can ask their area IT representative or contact ITaP at 765-494-4000.
Scammers don't want students to think before responding to them. Keep an eye out for suspicious language, phrases that imply quick deadlines or demands to open attachments.
Is the email making promises that seem too good to be true?
If so, then the email is probably not legitimate. Any kind of message that offers instant deposits into one's bank account is a scam.
Are there misspellings or typos?
Legitimate organizations should be sending well-written, typo-free emails. Spelling and grammar mistakes are a sign that the email might not be legitimate.
Report phishing attempts.
All suspicious emails can be reported by forwarding the message to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Change your password.
Change your password as soon as possible if you're concerned it might have leaked. ITaP also sends email alerts automatically to faculty and staff whenever their career account or direct deposit banking information is changed.