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Nuisance phone call or strange email? Recognising a Phishing scam

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We all like to think we know how to spot a fake email or a nuisance phone call, but as with all technology these things evolve and become more sophisticated. And it’s a sad fact, but people still fall victim to scams that not only cause financial damage, but can be frightening as well.

Always take time to think. If something doesn’t look, sound or feel right,  there’s a good chance it isn’t genuine – and there is help and support available.

Beware of being baited in to a phishing scam

Phishing scams aim to trick you into handing over sensitive information or open attachments/web-links to malicious content and come in the form of emails, phone calls and text messages. Sometimes, scammers will contact you, disguised as legitimate businesses, claiming you need to provide or confirm personal details, or even give them money.

How do I spot and avoid them?

For emails/texts:

  • Check the sender address directly matches the official email address
  • Watch out for poor grammar/spelling
  • Be wary of threats demanding you take action immediately
  • Don’t open attachments or links from a suspected scammer
  • Report all phishing emails to IT Services

If you’re worried you’ve been scammed, phone the IT Support Centre immediately on 0161 306 5544 (available 24/7). Visit IT services cyber security pages for lots of practical advice and tips on staying safe on line.

For phone calls:

Avoid calls from unknown numbers.

If you answer, take the caller’s name and tell them that you’ll call them back. A legitimate caller should have no problem with this, but only call a number that can be found on an official document, not the number they used to call you.

Search the number online. Lots of websites actually log spam numbers based on other people’s reports

Don’t be pressured into giving any information immediately even if they say it’s urgent. If you have any doubt about it, hang up and check.