BBB warns community of PayPal phishing scam

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Con artists have been targeting PayPal users with fake payment confirmations, according to the Better Business Bureau.

The emails contain links that allow the scammers to install malicious malware on users computers. BBB says the scams look like legitimate emails, and con artists use those emails to access banking and financial information.

Phishing scams can look like legitimate emails, which con artists then use to access banking and financial information while destroying your computer in the process.

According to BBB, anyone who receives an email claiming to be from PayPal claiming a payment is being processed that wasn’t made by the account user should not cancel the order because clicking the button allows the scammer to access your computer.

“Allowing a scammer to access your computer can open you up to the risk of identity theft,” Paula Flemming, a BBB spokesperson, said. “Scam artists can install malware that records passwords or hunts for personal information, such as bank account numbers on your computer.”

The BBB recommends taking these precautions to protect yourself from phishing scams:

  • Call before you click: If something sounds suspicious, confirm it by calling the company or checking the company website. Type the URL directly into your browser or do a web search. DON’T click on any links in unexpected messages.
  • Look for misspellings: Look out for spelling and grammar mistakes when dealing with a suspicious-looking email claiming to come from well known companies. Additionally, check the copyright at the bottom of the email – if it looks even slightly different, then it is most likely a fake.
  • Be cautious of generic emails: Scammers try to cast a wide net by including little or no specific information in their fake emails. Always be wary of messages that don’t contain your name, last digits of your account number or other personalized information.

Anyone who suspects they have received a fake email confirmation from PayPal should forward the email to spoof@paypal.com and report the scam to the BBB Scam Tracker.