You might have received an email coming from a company that asks you to forward them money or personal information in exchange for a contract. Beware, as these emails are likely some sort of scam.
This article will introduce you to some of the most common internet and email scams
and give you tips on how to avoid them.
How To Identify Scam Business Emails
There are simple ways to verify if the sender is from a real or a fake online company. One of the most simple ways is to browse for the company's name and phone number (not a mobile number) on the internet, and see if other users have reported scam.
You can also try to find the business' website by their online domain name. Call your internet service provider to know if this domain name has been registered as a business one.
Some other factors to look out for when you believe an email may be a spoof are poor grammar
, poor sentence construction
, request for personal information
, odd links
, and even lack of detail in an email signature
. Professional emails will most likely provide clear intent, open up a clear means of communication, and will begin with a direct address
(i.e. your first name, as opposed to "valued customer").
You will find below the example of a fake business email, reported and published by Consumer Fraud Reporting
From: "peter duka" <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 2006 21:23:04 +0900 (YAKT)
Anhui Guofeng Plastic Industry Co., Ltd
Tian Zhi Road
Hefei, ANH 230088
I am Mr.Peter Duka, CEO ANHUI GUOFENG PLASTIC INDUSTRY. We are a
company who deal on Plastics, candle holder,wind chime, photo frame,
suncatcher,night lamp,tiffany lamp and the other decorations. We export
into The United States, Canada and parts of Europe.
We require competent representatives who can help us establish a medium
of getting to our customers in the USA, Canada and Europe as well as
making payments through you to us.We will be glad and would be willing to
give a good percentage for this. Please contact us for more information on
the above Subject to your satisfaction you will be given the opportunity
to negotiate your mode of which we will pay for your services as our
representative.Please, if interested, send your reply to:
firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Common Email Scams
Below is the list of domain names commonly used to send malicious emails. Please note that these email address are not
necessarily fake domains or addresses. These domain names are the most common accounts used by fake businesses to send scam emails.
accountant.com, activist.com, adexec.com, africamail.com, afrikamail.com, alabama.usa.com, alaska.usa.com, allergist.com, alumni.com, alumnidirector.com, alumnidirector.com, americamail.com, amorous.com, angelic.com, archaeologist.com, arcticmail.com, arizona.usa.com, arkansas.usa.com, aroma.com, artlover.com, asia.com, asia-mail.com, atheist.com, australiamail.com, australiamail.com
bartender.net, been-there.com, berlin.com, berlin.com, bigger.com, bikerider.com, birdlover.com, brazilmail.com, brazilmail.com, brew-master.com
california.usa.com, californiamail.com, caress.com, catlover.com, cheerful.com, cheerful.com, chef.net, chemist.com, chinamail.com, chinamail.com, clerk.com, cliffhanger.com, collector.org, colorado.usa.com, columnist.com, comfortable.com, comic.com, comic.com, connecticut.usa.com, consultant.com, consultant.com, contractor.net, counsellor.com, count.com, count.com, couple.com, cutey.com, cyberdude.com, cybergal.com, cyber-wizard.com
dallasmail.com, dallasmail.com, delaware.usa.com, delhimail.com, delhimail.com, deliveryman.com, diplomats.com, disciples.com, disposable.com, doctor.com, doglover.com, doubt.com, dr.com, dublin.com, dublin.com, dutchmail.com
earthling.net, earthling.net, elvisfan.com, email.com, email.com, email.com, engineer.com, englandmail.com, europe.com, europe.com, europemail.com, execs.com
fan.com, fan.net, feelings.com, feelings.com, financier.com, fireman.net, florida.usa.com, footballer.com
gardener.com, gardener.com, geologist.com, georgia.usa.com, germanymail.com, germanymail.com, graduate.org, graphic-designer.com
hairdresser.net, hawaii.usa.com, hilarious.com, hockeymail.com, homosexual.net, hot-shot.com, hour.com, howling.com, humanoid.net, humanoid.net
idaho.usa.com, illinois.usa.com, iname.com, iname.com, indiamail.com, indiamail.com, indiana.usa.com, innocent.com, inorbit.com, instruction.com, instructor.net, insurer.com, iowa.usa.com, irelandmail.com, irelandmail.com, israelmail.com, israelmail.com, italymail.com, italymail.com
J, K, L :
japan.com, japan.com, journalist.com, kansas.usa.com, kentucky.usa.com, koreamail.com, koreamail.com, lawyer.com, legislator.com, lobbyist.com, london.com, london.com, louisiana.usa.com, loveable.com
mad.scientist.com, madonnafan.com, madrid.com, madrid.com, mail.com, mail.com, mail.com, mail.org, maine.usa.com, maryland.usa.com, massachusetts.usa.com, mexicomail.com, mexicomail.com, michigan.usa.com, mindless.com, mindless.com, minister.com, minister.com, minnesota.usa.com, mississippi.usa.com, missouri.usa.com, mobsters.com, monarchy.com, monarchy.com, montana.usa.com, moscowmail.com, moscowmail.com, munich.com, munich.com, musician.org, muslim.com, myself.com, myself.com
nastything.com, nebraska.usa.com, nevada.usa.com, newhampshire.usa.com, newjersey.usa.com, newmexico.usa.com, newyork.usa.com, nightly.com, nonpartisan.com, northcarolina.usa.com, northdakota.usa.com, null.net, nycmail.com, nycmail.com
oath.com, ohio.usa.com, oklahoma.usa.com, optician.com, oregon.usa.com, orthodontist.net, orthodox.com
pacific-ocean.com, pacificwest.com, paris.com, paris.com, pediatrician.com, pennsylvania.usa.com, petlover.com, photographer.net, physicist.net, playful.com, poetic.com, polandmail.com, polandmail.com, politician.com, popstar.com, popstar.com, post.com, post.com, presidency.com, priest.com, priest.com, programmer.net, protestant.com, publicist.com
radiologist.net, realtyagent.com, reborn.com, reborn.com, reggaefan.com, registerednurses.com, religious.com, repairman.com, representative.com, rescueteam.com, revenue.com, rhodeisland.usa.com, rocketship.com, rocketship.com, rockfan.com, rome.com, rome.com, royal.net, russiamail.com, russiamail.com
safrica.com, saintly.com, saintly.com, salesperson.net, samerica.com, sanfranmail.com, sanfranmail.com, scientist.com, scotlandmail.com, scotlandmail.com, secretary.net, seductive.com, singapore.com, singapore.com, singapore.com, sister.com, sizzling.com, snakebite.com, socialworker.net, sociologist.com, songwriter.net, soon.com, southcarolina.usa.com, southdakota.usa.com, spainmail.com, spainmail.com, surgical.net, swedenmail.com, swedenmail.com, swissmail.com
teachers.org, techie.com, techie.com, technologist.com, tempting.com, tennessee.usa.com, texas.usa.com, thegame.com, theplate.com, therapist.net, toke.com, tokyo.com, tokyo.com, toothfairy.com, torontomail.com, torontomail.com, tough.com, tvstar.com, tvstar.com
U, V :
umpire.com, usa.com, usa.com, usa.com, usa.com, utah.usa.com, vermont.usa.com, virginia.usa.com
W, X, Y, Z :
wallet.com, washington.usa.com, webname.com, weirdness.com, weirdness.com, westvirginia.usa.com, who.net, whoever.com, winning.com, wisconsin.usa.com, witty.com, worker.com, writeme.com, writeme.com, wyoming.usa.com, yours.com
Image: © iStock.