We’ve all probably received that email from “PayPal” saying that your account has been frozen and you need to click on a link to verify who you are. Alarm bells start ringing when they want you to click on a link in the email. They don’t really want you to verify who you are, they want your email and password so they can log in and access your personal details.
Well, I received one of those emails last week. I immediately marked it as Spam and thought nothing of it. Then about an hour later, I got another email from PayPal and I was just about to mark it as Spam when I noticed the email address that it had been sent from was [email protected] which actually looks genuine (it is, by the way, I checked on PayPal’s website!)
Here’s what the genuine email looked like:
I followed the instructions in the email and regained access to my PayPal account and everything was fine.
But then the other night, I was browsing eBay looking for a good bargain (I’m an avid bargain hunter) and I noticed that a lot of the items I was looking at had ridiculously expensive postage prices. I looked at where they were being posted from and it said somewhere in the UK. Puzzled, I carried on looking and eventually found something I was interested in so I went to click on it to put a bid on and it said that I couldn’t buy it and that I had to change my delivery address if I wanted to proceed with purchasing the item. So I went to view my profile and lo and behold, this is the address that was set as my primary address:
I couldn’t believe it! I Googled the address and it’s somewhere in Russia apparently (Tim’s recent Newsletter springs to mind, you can read it here)
It turns out that someone had originally gained access to my eBay account and as my PayPal account is linked directly to it, they’d gained access to that too!
I changed all my passwords for anything that I’d ever used my PayPal with just to make sure.
Thankfully, a few weeks earlier I’d got a new bank card and hadn’t had the chance to link it with my PayPal account. So if the hacker had tried to use my PayPal, it wouldn’t have worked anyways.
Keep an eye on your emails and make sure you can spot the scam ones from the genuine ones. Read Mike’s article here to help you spot the scam emails.
Thanks for reading,