Phishers pretending to be Apple


In my opinion, one of the most despicable types of computer criminals today is the phisher. As Wikipedia explains:

“Phishing is the attempt to obtain sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details (and, indirectly, money), often for malicious reasons, by disguising as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication… Phishing is typically carried out by email spoofing[4] or instant messaging, and it often directs users to enter personal information at a fake website whose look and feel are almost identical to the legitimate one.”

Even sophisticated users can fall for phishing email, and while phishers are despicable, they are good at what they do. It can be difficult to distinguish a phishing email from a legitimate one.

This week I received two phishing emails that were disguised as emails from Apple, which really angered me. Figure 1 shows one of these emails.

Phishing

Figure 1_An email pretending to be from Apple

I was able to tell that this was not really from Apple by looking at the sender’s real email address. (Figure 2)

Pishing

Figure 2_Check the sender’s email address

You should do two things if you receive a phishing email like this:

– Don’t click on any link in the email, and don’t reply.

– Forward the phishing email as an attachment (Figure 3) to Apple at this address: reportphishing@apple.com. Forwarding the email as an attachment will preserve the email’s technical details that Apple needs to take action against the phishing criminal.

Pishing

Figure 3_Forwarding an email as an attachment in Outlook for Mac

If you use Outlook to read your email, it has become much easier to report a phishing email. Microsoft has added a Report Message tool to the Outlook ribbon. (See figure 4).

Phising Outlook

Figure 4_How to report phishing emails in Outlook

So, if you receive a phishing email, please do report it so that the security teams can take down the phisher, or at least block this reported email from reaching other people’s Inbox.

You can read more about Apple’s work to stop phishing here. Let’s give Apple all the help we can to stop these criminals.

Have you received any Phishing emails yet? Share your experience with us in a comment, or reach out to us on Facebook or Twitter.

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