Email users are becoming more savvy about spotting scam messages. So scammers are always on the hunt for new ways to evade the "delete" button and entice you to download their malware. Scam emails disguised as funeral notifications reach a new low for scammers and unfortunately increase the chances that you might fall victim to their con.
How the Scam Works:
You receive an email with the subject line "funeral notification." The message appears to be from a legitimate funeral home, offers condolences and invites you to click on a link for more information of an upcoming "celebration of your friends life service." The notice does not disclose the name of your “friend” and instead of pointing you to the funeral home's website, the link to view the invitation and "more detailed information about the farewell ceremony" sends you to a foreign domain. Scammers place malware on these third party websites that download onto your computer, giving scammers access to personal information on your machine.
Malware, short for “malicious software," includes viruses and spyware that is installed on your computer without your consent. These programs can cause your device to crash and can be used to monitor and record your online activity. Scammers use malware to steal personal information, send spam, and commit other fraud.
As always, watch for scammers changing up this con. They may hijack any funeral home's name and/or change their message.
Tips to Avoid Email Scams:
Spot common email scams no matter the circumstances, by following these tips:
As with any scam, you can’t completely insulate yourself but you can take action to lessen your chances of becoming a victim.
For more tips you can trust, visit www.bbb.org.
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Kelvin Collins is president/CEO of the Better Business Bureau of Central Georgia & the CSRA, Inc. serving 41 counties in Central Georgia and the Central Savannah River Area (CSRA). This tips column is provided through the local BBB and the Council of Better Business Bureaus. Questions or complaints about a specific company or charity should be referred directly to the BBB at Phone: 1-800-763-4222, Web site: www.bbb.org or E-mail: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org