Beware of This PayPal Phishing Scam

I receive a lot of spam emails through all of the different email accounts I have. Usually I just delete everything in the spam folder, however, sometimes I like to scroll through and see what’s in there. So, today I was looking at my spam email and noticed an email that looked like it was coming from Paypal.

The email was titled: Limited Access On Your PayPal Online. This was interesting to me because I don’t have a Paypal account attached to the email address it was sent to, which immediately sent a red flag that it must be some kind of scam.

It Can Look Legit

The email actually looks real. It has the Paypal logo at the top and a Paypal-style graphic. Then the email begins with, “You may have noticed that some limitations have been placed on your PayPal account.

paypal phishing scamThis can seem legit because if you don’t sell a lot on eBay, Paypal may hold your payments before you can withdraw the money into your bank account.

And the goal of these phishing and scam emails is to scare you into thinking something is wrong with your account and you need to take immediate action to resolve the issue.

The email says:

Your account may be restricted for a number of reasons; you’ll find out when you next log in to PayPal. As a result, you’ll notice that some of the following options are now unavailable:

– Send money to other PayPal users
– Request or receive money from other users
– Edit or remove account details
– Close your PayPal account

Obviously, one of the main purposes of Paypal is to send money to other users and receive money from other users. So, this email threatens to take the most important features of Paypal away from you.

What to Look Out for

Then it tells you that you will need to access your Paypal account where you will find a message explaining why your account has been restricted. Of course, it would take too much time and effort to open a new browser window or tab and type “paypal.com”, so they have included a handy link in the email that you just need to click to access your account.

However, if you look at the picture below, you can see that the link in the email goes to a sketchy redirected website, not the actual Paypal site…

paypal redirect address

If you click their link, it will include a fake login. And when you type in your email address & password and send it, your login info goes to the phishing scammers instead of logging into your Paypal account.

So, if you receive an email threatening your Paypal account, be sure to open a new browser window and actually go to Paypal.com to log in to your account. Never click links from emails. I still don’t log in from links that actually come from the real Paypal company.

I hope this info is helpful and please share it on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ if you think it might help others that sell online.

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