We actively monitor email flow across all of our clients and tweak the security as/when required, however no system should be relied on to protect you from 100% of spam, and on occasion unwanted emails will get through.
In particular we’ve noticed an increase in targeted emails asking the recipient to arrange the transfer of funds via bank transfer – these emails can be very convincing and often appear to come from a valid user in the organisation.
We’ve seen the following examples being used more and more frequently:
- Someone poses as a boss of the company instructing staff to make a wire transfer into the fraudster’s account.
- Fraudsters pose as the IT services department of a bank saying they want to make a test transfer – but it’s not a test.
- Fraudsters claim to be a supplier and ask for outstanding invoices to be paid into a new bank account.
We recommend all staff remain vigilant when opening emails, particularly if receiving an email that relates to a financial transfer or one with an unexpected attachment.
To help identify spam you may want to review each email based on the following key points:
1. Look at the sender’s email address:
– but remember, email addresses can be spoofed to look like someone you know so be cautious.
2. Look at the Subject line:
– Does it create a sense of urgency e.g. ‘You have an unpaid fine’ ‘your Account is locked’? These are often viruses.
– Does it have 1 word in it but appears to be a response like “Re: Document”? – This is also a tell-tale sign of a virus.
3. Look at the body of the message:
– If the sender is a recognized sender, does it follow their normal emailing criteria
– Does it have a salutation
– is it directed to you specifically, or is it generic (Hi, vs Hi Adam,).
– Does it have a signature for the person who sent it? Does it match the name of the person you identified in the email address above?
– Does it have the company’s contact information and/or graphics that you’ve been accustomed to seeing if you’ve received mail from them before?
4. Look at the content of the body:
– Is it just asking you to open a file or go to a website link? Is it asking you to arrange payment or complete a financial transaction?
5. Look at the direction of the message
– Does it ask you to open an attached file? Does it create a sense of urgency? With viruses, the purpose of the body is to entice you to open the attachment. A common method is by fear and urgency.
6. Look at the attachment:
– is it a zip file? Is it a PDF? Is it a docx or doc? – how big is it? If it’s really small, around 1kb to 22kb, it is quite likely a virus – couple this information with the above identifying marks above and you will have a very good indication that it’s a virus.
We hope you found these tips useful, but if you still have questions and would like to discuss security please call us in the office on 01444 250404.