Lately, creating, developing and executing email scams has become a specialized area of expertise for email scammers. These email scam artists are so innovative and persuasive in their efforts that, it is difficult to differentiate between a genuine and a scam email.

The scammers work under the camouflage of genuine individuals or organizations. By stealing your personal information such as your social security number, bank account details or passwords, they rob you of your money. In order to protect yourself from scam emails, you need to educate yourself in recognizing and reporting scam emails.

How to Recognize Scams

For reporting scam emails, you need to know certain scams, such as phishing and others that are used commonly for defrauding people. Newer and more innovative scams are being added every day. But if you recognize the contents of the commonly used scams, you will be reporting scam emails the correct way.

How to Recognize Scams

Before reporting scam emails, it is very important that you are able to differentiate between the fake and genuine ones.  You should be warned of a scam email, if you observe any of the following features

  • Threatening or alarming messages for closing certain bank or credit card account
  • Assurances of monetary benefits for very little or efforts of yours
  • Any suggestion or deals that sound too nice, alluring and enticing
  • Grammatical or spelling mistakes
  • Request for any distressed or sad condition
  • Appeal for donating to a charitable organization after a natural disaster that made news headlines.

Popular Scams

For making it easier for reporting scam emails, you need to be acquainted with the different kinds of email scams

  • Use of Names of Microsoft or Other Reputed Companies

Messages, purporting to be from Microsoft, saying that you have won a Microsoft Contest and that your Logon information or password is needed. It may also be indicated that a representative of Microsoft would be contacting you for helping you with your computer

  • Lottery Scam

The email message may indicate your winning of Microsoft lottery or Sweepstakes. It may look to be sent by a Microsoft executive

  • Rogue Security Software Scams

Also known as Scareware, the software seems to be helpful for providing security to your online activities. But, it generates misleading alerts that may prompt you to participate in fraudulent transactions.

Post-Victim Actions

If you ever fall victim to an email scam or even apprehend, falling victim, take the following steps for minimizing any damage and providing protection to your identity.

  • Alter your PINs or passwords on all of your online accounts, that are vulnerable for scam
  • Put a fraud alert on your credit reports and check with your banks
  • Instead of following the link in the fraudulent message, contact your bank by online merchant, directly
  • Close the accounts that have been defrauded
  • Review your credit card and bank statements, routinely and note any unexplained charges for transactions you did not make.

Use Theft Protection Tools

Make use of Windows Internet Explorer, the Smart Screen Filter, and Microsoft Office Outlook.