How to Do an Email Scam Check
The internet has become the ideal breeding ground for scammers looking for the easiest way to rob their targets. In its 2020 Mobile Threat Landscape Report, Wandera revealed that a new phishing website crops up every 20 seconds! Email scams are becoming so rampant and elaborate, that even the most vigilant among us should learn how to recognize an email fraud scheme.
How to Identify a Spam Email Vs. Scam
There is no unified legal definition of spam email, but the term most commonly refers to unwanted messages sent in bulk. They are often promotional or commercial in nature and are of little to no value to the recipient.
Spam email may be annoying, but it’s not necessarily illegal. A spam email could be a marketing newsletter that you agreed to when you signed up for that company’s terms and conditions, for example. Find out here how to stop receiving these emails.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, spam can include different scam schemes and hoaxes that are illegal.
Scam is an umbrella term that indicates any kind of illegal and dishonest plan, most often to steal money from the victim.
Phishing is a type of scam in which the perpetrators are posing to be well-known, established companies and institutions, trying to trick you into divulging your personal information like passwords or credit card details.
Phishing messages are designed to look authentic so that you don’t question the sender’s request for payment or disclosure of crucial information. You should always report email abuse because it helps the authorities track down the criminals behind these scams.
This simple breakdown highlights the main differences between spam and scam:
|Can be illegal, but doesn’t have to be|
Often consists of marketing or promotional content
|Tries to steal your money, identity, or both|
|Sent from the same sender on a regular basis|
Sent at irregular intervals
How to Check an Email for Phishing
Phishers are continually getting more skilled in their deceitful efforts, so you should double your scrutiny when you come across an email that strikes you as even slightly sketchy.
Keep in mind some of these common giveaway signs that you’re dealing with a scam:
- The email appears to be from your bank, phone or wireless carrier, a government agency, or any other organization that you regularly deal with
- The sender of the email is asking you to update or verify your personal or financial details (often under the pretense of a security issue)
- The message doesn’t address you by your full name
- The email is peppered with typos, grammatical errors, or poor formatting
- The URL website address slightly differs from the URL you visited before
- Your device seems to be slowed down
What to Do if You Are Not Sure Whether the Email Is From a Genuine Sender
If you’re in any doubt about the legitimacy of the email, it’s a good idea to call the company that’s allegedly behind that email. A customer service representative can look into the message you received and advise whether it is authentic.
A lot of firms have dedicated email addresses where you can report phishing, so check the FAQ or Help section on their website for additional information.
Remember, never give out any of your personal or financial details if you’re not sure who you’re disclosing this information to. If the email sender is genuine, they will honor your concern and take the required steps to verify their identity.
Spam Email—Reining It In With DoNotPay
With endless messages steadily trickling into our computers, phones, and tablets, achieving “Inbox Zero” became synonymous with being productive and staying on top of things.
Understanding how to unsubscribe from emails and report spam is the 101 of running an efficient inbox, which also helps you lead a more effective, less stressful life. The only problem is that, if you’re doing it all by yourself, the solution can become worse than the problem. Don’t struggle with it on your own, when you can fast-track the process with DoNotPay.
Here is what you need to do:
- Open DoNotPay in any web browser or your iOS device
- Go to the Spam Collector option
- Enter your email address and connect it to DoNotPay
- Wait until you receive your next spam email, then forward it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
One of our chatbots will immediately unsubscribe you from that mailing list. Better yet, if there’s a class-action lawsuit against the sender because what they did was against the law, you can choose to be added to the list of damaged parties. A spam email is illegal if you didn’t agree to receive it, or if the sender didn’t include the option to unsubscribe.
If the court rules against the sender, you might receive up to $500 in compensation for your troubles (or, as we like to call it, get a little bit of spam email revenge!) Once you’ve been added to the class action, a flag icon will pop up in the Spam Collector tab on your DoNotPay dashboard.
Clear Out Your Physical Mailbox, Too
Figuring out how to stop spam emails is crucial, but your efforts shouldn’t end here. It’s not just your email mailbox that needs to breathe—the same goes for your postal mailbox that gets fed a bunch of worthless mail every day.
There is now an easy way to ask senders of this paper junk to stop sending you their annoying flyers, newsletters, letters inviting you in on a “get rich quick scheme,” and fishy offers to “claim your prize.” All you need to do is team up with DoNotPay and send us a photograph of the received junk mail.
Here is how this simple process works:
- Tap or click on the DoNotMail option on the DoNotPay homepage
- Hit the Enroll Now button
- Upload your photos
We’ll take it up from there and contact the senders on your behalf, making sure they don’t pester you with their junk mail again. What’s more, we’ll check if there’s a current class-action lawsuit against the company behind the mail in question. If there is and you choose to be added to the list of damaged parties, you might get up to $500 in compensation without lifting a finger!
There’s So Much More That DoNotPay Can Manage For You
Does the number of things you have to do in a day feel disproportionate to the amount of spare time on your hands? Are you feeling upset and frustrated about some issues in your life that you don’t have the money or knowledge to resolve on your own?
You can finally breathe a sigh of relief. DoNotPay uses state-of-the-art artificial intelligence to assist you in solving a tapestry of problems, from suing a company that wronged you to blocking spam email on your Android phone.
Jump over these obstacles with the help of our app. We can assist you with:
- Protecting yourself from stalking and harassment
- Managing credit card issues
- Canceling subscriptions or memberships
- Appealing traffic tickets
- Scheduling a DMV appointment quickly
- Holding the line when calling customer service
- Fighting speeding tickets
- Eliminating spam mail
- Tracking down scammers behind illegal robocalls
- Disputing parking tickets
- Dealing with bills you cannot pay
- Obtaining refunds for delayed or canceled flights
- Suing people and companies in small claims court
- Getting refunds from various companies