Keep the Information Flowing
Small contributions go a long way. Your donation to Consumer Action, a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, can help us cover the cost of research, writing, and translation of our materials. To keep our services free for those who need them. Select an amount to give.
Don’t fall for e-card scams
Wednesday, December 02, 2009
We know you like to hear from friends and family at the holidays, but beware e-card scams. Hallmark is one of several greeting card companies being targeted via fraudulent e-mails that are flooding the Internet. These e-mails claim to have a link to an e-Card from a family member, friend or neighbor. Clicking on the link downloads a virus onto your computer that compromises personal data.
Here is an example of a scam e-card email:
What you can do
- Delete the e-mail without opening it. If you click on the link in the bogus e-mail, you may launch a Trojan virus that can remotely command your machine for the purpose of gathering your personal information.
- Report suspicious e-mail to your e-mail service provider so they can take action.
- File a complaint at http://www.ic3.gov/.
- If you are unsure if you've received a legitimate card, don't click on a link in the e-mail. Visit the legitimate site for the business, such as http://www.hallmark.com, and follow directions for downloading legitimate cards.
E-mail safety tips
- Don't open e-mails you know are spam. A code embedded in spam advertises that you opened the e-mail and confirms your address is valid, which in turn can generate more spam.
- Don't open e-mails from unknown senders.
- Don't open attachments in e-mails unless you are expecting to receive one. If you receive an attachment that you are not expecting, even if it’s from someone you know, first read the e-mail and make sure the attachment is legitimate. If you're still not sure, independently call or e-mail the sender to confirm, but do not reply to the original e-mail.
- Don't click on links in e-mails that appear to be from financial companies (PayPal, banks, credit card companies, etc.) that direct you to verify or confirm account details. Instead, call the company if you are concerned about your account.
Support Consumer Action
Consumer Help Desk
- Help Desk
- Submit Your Complaints
- Presente su queja
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Links to Consumer Resources
- Consumer Service Guide (CSG)
- Class Action Database
- Consumer Booknotes