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Fraudulent job offers and other financial scam emails are a common issue reported by members of the university community. These scams often target victims with promises of easy to earn money. If you receive a spontaneous email offering you part time job, the offer is probably a scam.

Other financial schemes involve coercing individuals into paying money to prevent a negative outcome, such as a tax audit or police investigation, or asking the individual to pay a fee up front to claim a prize. Another type of scam seeks individuals’ personally identifiable information (PII), such as Social Security numbers and birthdates, to commit identity theft. Individuals providing information to scammers may suffer large financial losses, as well as negative impacts to their credit. It is important that you know how to spot these scams so you can easily ignore them.

One thing to be aware of is that scammers create convincing emails that may look like official communication from your bank, credit card issuer, or a retailer. These emails often include a link to a very convincing, yet fraudulent website that will ask you to log in with your username and password. If you provide your credentials, the criminal can then use them to gain access to your legitimate account. From there, they can steal your personal information or generate fraudulent transactions. If you ever receive an email asking you to click a link to log in and update your account or change your information, be safe and use your browser to directly type in the legitimate website address for that account in order to complete this request. By doing this, you will always be sure you are on the right website.

Scammers constantly target individuals by email, false advertisements, and phone calls to bring these types of scams to fruition. Being wary of any communication that meets any of the above criteria will go a long way in keeping your information and money safe!

Reporting Scams

It is very important that targets of online or phone scams report this to the proper authorities. Although it can be a bit embarrassing to have been hit by such a crime, reporting is the only way to direct investigators and regulators to pursue the criminals behind the scam or identity theft. Aside from reporting the scam to law enforcement, it is important to work with your bank, credit card issuer, or the business where your account was compromised to take the necessary steps in preventing further financial.

If your OSU provided email account received an email that you feel may be related to a financial scam, you may:

  • Report suspicious or unsolicited emails in Office 365 (web interface or desktop application). Microsoft uses this information to stop other emails and block links in existing emails.

      • If you are reporting the email in Outlook on the web, click the ‘Report’ button and click ‘Report Phishing’.

      • If you are reporting the email in the Outlook desktop application, make sure you have the Report Message add-in applied to your account. Select the email you would like to report, click Report Message, and select the category you would like to report the message as.

          • To apply the Report Message add-in, click the ‘Get Add-ins’ button on the tool bar, then search for Report Message, click Add and Continue. After the process of applying the add-in is complete, the Report Message button should appear on the right-hand side of the ribbon.

  • Report the email to the IT Helpdesk by composing a new email message addressed to helpdesk@okstate.edu and dragging the suspicious or unsolicited email to the new email message; this method will allow the suspicious email to be added as an attachment in the new mail item. You may also forward the suspicious email to helpdesk@okstate.edu

 

 

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