The Rules Have Changed.
Email should not be trusted.
Sound severe? Well, it's true. It's trivial for a virus to forge anything. Modern viruses make a database of email addresses and mailbomb everyone, using every name on the list as the purported sender. So you cannot trust that an email is actually from who it says is the sender.
It gets worse. There will be in such an email a link or an attachment. These are typically in Blue and Underlined. NEVER click on either, unless you asked the sender to send it to you.
An attachment is a file in the email. It can contain hostile code to infect you.
HERE is a screenshot of a very common virus in an email attachment.
A link is a way of sending you to a website, or so it seems. In email, it is possible to create what looks like a link, but it either takes you elsewhere or is actually hostile code. Both are very bad things. Just because it looks like a link, it may not be one. Read about browser spoofs and test yours HERE safely.
We will never send you an unsolicited link or attachment.
A 'phish' is an email link designed to steal from you. They appear to be from Ebay, Paypal, your bank, etc. and typically warn that your password must be changed or other security concern. They look very real if you were to click on it. They want to capture your password or other information, so DON'T CLICK ON THEIR LINK! I suggest that, if you should get one, forward it to an abuse or spoof desk. Read more about phishes HERE.
A dangerous email containing ZIP file(s) began in the summer of 2008. It seems to be from the Postal Service
or UPS. Use common sense! How would they have your email address, for starters? Expect
it to become rampant in the holiday seasons.
Here's an image of one to yours truly.
This ZIP if opened will execute and run a viral program called Antivirus 2008 or 2009. The humor escapes me. You will end up reformatting your hard drive as removal is difficult and uncertain.
Here is more from Snopes.
Here are some nice screenshots of the infection and technical information.
In summary, treat all email with suspicion - what you see in the email body can be forged, the sender's address or return address can be forged and the email header can also be manipulated to disguise its true origin. Never use a link in an email to get to any web page unless you requested it. If you didn't request it and are dying of curiosity, type the URL directly into your browser's address bar. But remember, curiosity killed the cat!
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