If you are like just about every other person around the globe, your email inbox is probably littered with spam. Some of this spam can be quite enticing, while others look absolutely real. Some of these emails (or even text messages to those tethered to their phones) are ones pretending to be Amazon order confirmations. True, many of these look so fake that they get deleted immediately, but some, as we mentioned, are convincing enough that people open the Amazon scam up and follow the instructions inside.
So, how do we know if we are about to fall victim to an Amazon scam or not? How can we spot the fake from the real and not get duped into clicking links or making phone calls? Let’s see if we can help.
As far as Amazon scam emails are concerned, there are a few noticeable signs that can save you. The first of these would be the sending email address. So many of the email apps nowadays no longer show the sender’s full email address but instead show you the name the sender chose to use. In this instance, you would probably see something like “Amazon” or even “Amazon Order” as the sender’s name and based on that, assume it is legit. To fully reveal the sender, you just need to click on it and the full email pops up. This is where you can typically get the first clue that you may be getting phished.
As an example, the email address in question would look something like this: [email protected] First off, Amazon’s customer support would never use a .art domain extension for customer service. According to Amazon themselves, their legitimate Amazon emails have a dot before “amazon.com. For instance, their Amazon Pay website is pay.amazon.com.
To go along with that, Amazon says they would never send out emails to customers with a link to an IP address. If you receive something that looks like this, http://123.456.789.123/amazon.com/, then presume you are in for some trouble if you click on it. So, don’t.
You may also get an email confirmation saying that an item you purchased is on the way. This is another way to get you to click on their attached link. Instead, go to your own Amazon account and “your orders” to see if there is an order that matches the description in the email. Chances are there isn’t one.
You might also get an email requesting you to update your payment information. Again, go to “your orders” and look for your account information. If there is no request on that page asking you to update your payment method, then the email is bogus.
Some Amazon scam emails may include attachments or prompts asking you to install software on your device. DO NOT DO IT. This will give scammers access to your computer so that they can mine your personal data.
There are other small hints that you should be on the lookout for if you suspect you have received an Amazon scam email. Take a look at the address the package is to be sent to. If it’s wrong, then so is the email. If you see any typos or grammatical errors in the email, you know they are fake.
What exactly are these Amazon scam emails trying to accomplish? Some are so obviously fake, why even send them? Well, they are hoping you won’t look closely at the email and simply react to the issue at hand. Say that you received an email confirming an order for a new, tremendously expensive set of golf clubs, but the address on the confirmation is incorrect. The goal here then is to have you panic, knowing an expensive set of clubs are on their way to the wrong address. They want you to act.
Now, looking at the Amazon scam email, you find the phone number connected to the order. They want you to call it. When you do and when they answer, they will probably start asking you a number of questions for “security reasons.” They will ask your name and correct address, and then they will ask you your credit card number. Boom. Done deal, your identity has just been stolen and your credit card will be maxed out within 10 minutes.
The solution to these Amazon scam issues is simple. Never, and we do mean never, click on any links, even if you think you have a legitimate email from Amazon. An Amazon scam can start and end by clicking on a link.
Never call the phone number included in the Amazon scam email. Even if you know it is a fake and you want to make them “pay”, you may end up doing the paying in the long run. You have no idea if the number you are calling is a premium-line scam, which means you end up paying big to make have that call connect. Another reason why you don’t want to call that number is that you are tipping your hand and telling scammers that you’re open for business for future scam calls.
Finally, do not respond to any of the emails, even if you know they are Amazon scam emails. If you do, you will once again be confirming to scammers of the future that your email address is up, running, and monitored by you, meaning expect a flood of new emails. The best way to vent that Amazon spam anger is to report them to Amazon and then delete the email.