Technology Services Bulletin

November 15, 2018
1 item

Reminder: Beware Phishing Attempts

A string of scams are taking place asking people to purchase gift cards. Some of the most recent scams are requesting App Store and iTunes gift cards. 

The scam follows a certain formula: the individual receives an email impersonating someone they are familiar with instilling an urgency to purchase App Store and iTunes gift cards from the nearest retailer (convenience store, the electronics retailer, etc.). After the cards have been purchased, the individual is asked to pay by sharing the 16-digit code on the back of the card.

A recent example of this is being used to phish university staff and senior management impersonating our staff by emailing from domains @my.com, @outlook.com and others. Do not respond to these emails. Do not buy gift cards or online gift certificates because an email instructs you to do so. Check the sender email address and call the person using their office number if you’re concerned with the validity of the request. It’s very easy to send an email that looks similar to the university email addresses.

These emails can be reported as phishing attempts in MyEmail using the following steps:

  • Open the message you'd like to report.
  • At the top-right corner of the message, click the down arrow next to the "Reply" button.
  • Select Report Phishing.

An example of the current scam can be found below:

From: Supervisor Name <supervisor.name@my.com>
Date: November 9, 2018 at 17:24:40 EST
To: Victim <victim.email@lakeheadu.ca>
Subject: Re : REQUEST 
Reply-To: Supervisor Name <supervisor.name@my.com>

Hi Victim Name, 

I am tied up right now, Can you purchase itunes gift card 6 pieces - $100 each? I would reimburse you when am through, Let me know also i would prefer to call you but can't receive or call at the moment with my line.