CONSUMER ALERT: “PHISHING” SCAMS CONTINUE TO TARGET SOUTH DAKOTA CONSUMERS
PIERRE, S.D. – Attorney General Larry Long is warning consumers to beware of “phishing” emails that attempt to trick individuals into disclosing personal identifying information. Typically these emails appear to come from reputable businesses but actually they are designed to redirect you to fraudulent websites. The latest “phishing” scams involves emails that claim to be from governmental agencies. The email subject line reads “official information” and claims that “due to recent changes in Rules and Regulations, it is required by law for all Internet Users to identify themselves in compliance federal regulations to make internet use safer.
“The bottom line is that there is no law requiring internet users to register with the government,” said Long. “These deceptive yet legitimate looking emails from unscrupulous individuals are after one thing- your personal identifying information.”
Be cautious of unsolicited emails which might contain the following:
- Warnings that accounts will be closed if you do not reconfirm your billing address.
- Links associated with the email. Contact the company direct using a legitimate phone number or website.
- Suspicious “address bar” at the top of the browser. If it is a different domain name than the firm being represented it is most likely fraudulent.
The Consumer Protection Division has received “phishing” emails which mimic companies such as eBay, Citibank, U.S. Bank, Wells Fargo and SunTrust Mortgage. Just remember that regardless of who is sending you email you should always take the time to make sure the offer or request is legitimate.
If you think you have been a victim of this scam, contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division at 1-800-300-1986 or email@example.com.