Phishing cons are getting increasingly sophisticated, as even my tech-savvy boyfriend and I did a double take at this Netflix phishing email — before realizing it was complete crap.
The goal, as with most phishing emails: To get you to provide your personal info, password, and ideally your credit card numbers to “reinstate” your account.
Here’s how to figure out if your Netflix email is real or not.
Now, many phishing emails are as hilariously identifiable as frauds, like this one we received this week directly from “Marc Zucenberg,” via an email domain @server194.web-hosting.com.
Because “Marc Zucenberg” doesn’t use Facebook email — and he has lots of time to reach out personally to insist we Verify your Fan Page cause you received many reports for your posts.
Seriously, we couldn’t stop laughing
On the other hand, the Netflix phishing email looks very authentic at first glance.
The logos, the color, the typography — they all look pro. They even went so far as to include Netflix’s real customer service number at the bottom of the email and show it as coming from the proper domain, netflix.com when you mouse over any of the links.
Everything is even spelled correctly.
But it is, in, fact a way to try and trick you into giving up your personal and financial information.
This may be one of the most sophisticated phishing scams out there, and it’s really hard to identify relative to others. So here are some clues to help you establish that an email request like this is not legit:
-The email was addressed to us using an email name that’s not associated with our actual Netflix account. For example, if your user name is Mary Smith, but it’s sent to msmith, good sign that it’s a scam.
-The Netflix phishing email states they were informed by iTunes about a membership cancellation request. Huh? iTunes has nothing to do with Netflix. They’re competitors in the streaming movie arena.
-Netflix would never cancel your account with one day notice. On the Netflix help page, it specifically states that when you cancel, you can continue to watch Netflix until your account automatically closes at the end of your current billing period.
If you do happen to click the big red button, you’ll be taken to a page that looks really legit, as seen here. But it’s not.
And that really sucks because seeing that https:// before netflix.com is one of the first ways you would ordinarily verify a real site.
Especially when, if you click that RESTART YOUR MEMBERSHIP button, the Update Payment page looks so similar to the real one.
Your best bet, if you ever get a password reset email or cancellation email of any kind from Netflix — or anyone — is to suspect it’s fake automatically.
Then, get out of email, and go to your browser to click over to the site directly, instead of clicking from the email. You can examine your account details that way.
And if you want to be extra nice, then forward the fraudulent email to firstname.lastname@example.org to help them nail the perpetrators.
Better safe than hacked.