How to spot a fake Amazon email

There are several ways that viruses can get onto your computer and one is through email. A malicious program can be attached to an email message and if you open it, you risk infecting your computer. Malware can lock your PC until you pay a fee to unlock it, it can corrupt files, and it can cause various other problems. Here's how to spot a fake Amazon email.

I get lots of emails from Amazon, even though I rarely buy anything. One of the ways that you can spot a fake Amazon email is if you haven't bought anything, or if you get multiple messages. Both are true in my case and four turned up in my inbox this morning. Do not be tempted to read Amazon emails if you haven't bought anything recently.

Spot fake Amazon emails

Lots of people do buy goods from Amazon, so an email from the company might not be that unusual. It might even be expected. However, Amazon is pretty quick at sending out emails and a minute after placing an order you usually get email confirmation. You won't get one the next day or the next week, so be suspicious of any email message that didn't immediately follow a purchase.

Another problem with this email is that it has come through on the wrong email account. I have several and use different ones for different purposes. This isn't the one I use with Amazon and the company does not know it. It is therefore 100% guaranteed to be fake. A good tip for protecting yourself on the web is to get another email account and only use it with your bank, Amazon, PayPal and so on. Never tell anyone else. If the email is not on that account it is not real.

Another way I can tell that it is fake is that the email starts with "Hello," like this:

Spotting fake Amazon emails

Emails from Amazon always include my name like this:

Amazon email messages

See the difference. Oh, and I don't use amazon.com, I use amazon.co.uk.

The list of ways I can spot a fake goes on and on. Like the way the order details and invoice are in an attached file and not in the message. Never open email attachments, especially if you think it is fake.

If I really wanted to see what this attachment was, I would boot up Linux and open it, because no Windows viruses work in Linux and I'm guessing it is a Windows virus of some sort. There are so many other pointers  to this email being a fake, I won't even bother to try opening the attachment. I will simply delete the email. To find out about goods you have ordered, go to the Amazon website and log in to your account. You'll find the details there.

Keep your wits about you when reading your email, and be suspicious of emails with attachments.


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