Email hoax targets BigPond users
TELSTRA today reminded northern NSW residents of the dangers of hoax emails, following reports of an email scam claiming to be from BigPond.
Telstra Country Wide Area General Manager for NSW North Coast, Michael Sharpe, said the hoax email was among thousands that circulated across Australia every year and put customers at risk of fraud when they inadvertently responded and provided their personal details.
“Telstra urges locals to be very suspicious of emails sent by people unknown to them, containing misspelt words or directing them to a link,” Mr Sharpe said.
“These hoax emails are often malicious and designed to obtain private information such as credit card details and passwords, or potentially expose your computer to a damaging virus. The best advice is to ignore and delete these messages.”
Telstra’s warning follows research indicating that while there has been a global decline in hoax emails, also known as phishing attacks, scammers are increasingly pretending to be organisations such as telecommunication and insurance companies.
“Telstra and BigPond will never send an email requesting passwords, account verification, credit card details or other personal details by asking you to ’click on a link’,” Mr Sharpe said.
“You should only provide this type of information in response to an expected request or one you have initiated.”
“We have also established a page at www.bigpond.com/help/ContactUs/MisuseService where customers can report hoax emails that appear to be from Telstra or BigPond.”
If you suspect you have received a hoax email:
- Do not reply to it
- Do not open any attachment or click on any embedded links
- Delete the email
The other steps you can take to protect yourself include:
- Beware of unsolicited requests for sensitive information – don't follow suspicious links from senders or sites you don't know or trust
- If in doubt, visit trusted websites by typing the internet address (URL) into the browser address bar rather than clicking on a link embedded in an email. Save frequently used links in your favourites or bookmarks
- Never respond to requests for personal information in an unexpected email or pop-up window. If in doubt, always contact the institution that claims to be the sender of the email or pop-up window
- Use a spam filter to help block unsolicited and unwanted email
People can also visit Telstra's Internet and Cyber-Safety page, www.telstra.com.au/cyber-safety, for other tips to stay safe online.