Cybercriminals Strike with Financial Aid Email Phishing Scams

Protect Yourself by Being Aware and Reporting Suspicions

September 04, 2019 |

 

 

Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash 

 

Cybercriminals are sneaky – they’re always on the lookout for opportunities to steal information. As new Mavericks settle in and returning ones get back into the routine, the start of the school year is a time when phishing scams are particularly threatening to students. A recent phishing trend involves emails from cybercriminals posing as the University. These emails pretend to contain information about financial aid, a very relevant topic to students this time of year.  

 

How Do I Spot the Scam? Be Aware! 

These phishing emails may appear very similar to legitimate University email communications, but don’t be fooled! In general, here are a few things you can look for in order to help distinguish real from fake: 

  • Check the email address. Official University communications come from email addresses that end with @mnsu.edu. Emails from other addresses, such as Gmail or Yahoo, are not official and could be a phishing scam. 

  • Look for errors in spelling or grammar. Sentences that don’t make sense or that contain mistakes are an easy giveaway that an email is not from a legitimate source and could be a phishing scam. 

  • Be wary of anyone asking for personal information. Official emails from the University will never ask you to provide personal information through email. If the sender asks you to share your password, for example, chances are it is a phishing scam. 

 

I Received a Phishing Email – Now What? Report It! 

If you suspect that you’ve received a malicious email, don’t interact with it – just report it! You can help protect the rest of the University by alerting our information security team of any possible threats. Forward the suspicious email to spam@mnsu.edu to have our team evaluate it. We will take the proper steps to block it if needed. 

 

Questions? 

Contact the IT Solutions Center at 507-389-6654 or ITSolutionsCenter@mnsu.edu  

 

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