When looking for the best online deal, 9 out of 10 shoppers check Amazon and you probably did it at least once or twice. Today, Amazon is the biggest eCommerce retailer, surpassing Walmart, includes dozens of products and services and serves millions of customers. Unfortunately, this also means that many users are “prime” targets for an Amazon scam email.
In this article, we will talk about how to identify if the email you got was really from Amazon or one of its services like Amazon Prime, or if it is fake and how to report an email scam on Amazon.
How to Know if the Email is From Amazon?
What should you be looking for?
- Clue 1: “From” who is it?
If you received an email from someone claiming to be Amazon (or any company for that matter), the first place you should look to confirm this is the “From” section of the email.
If the email is coming from an address like [email protected] or a similar email address, it’s definitely fake, so don’t bother responding.
But what if the scammers were a little better organized and the email is [email protected] or something like that? Well, that still doesn’t mean it’s a legitimate Amazon email.
- Clue 2: How the email addresses you?
Does the email address you as “Dear Customer” or has a similar generic greeting? Then it’s 99.9% fake.
A company like Amazon will always address you by your name and will also include your shipping address. If either of these is missing, it’s a very likely possibility that it’s not real.
- Clue 3: Are there typos, spelling errors, or other mistakes?
For all of their effort to create new elaborate scams and very believable phishing sites, a lot of email scammers flunk when it comes to simple things like grammar and spelling.
If your “Amazon” email is filled with all kinds of typos and grammar mistakes, it’s obviously fake so don’t respond to it. No company with a modicum of self-consciousness would allow itself to send an email like that and least of all one with a revenue of $75.5 billion.
- Clue 4: What does the hyperlinked text say?
There will probably be at least one or two links, product ads, or buttons in the email. Don’t click on them (even if you are positive that the email is really from Amazon). Instead, hover your mouse over them.
This will let you see to what address will the button or link take you. If it’s not Amazon.com, don’t click.
Here are also some other signs that the email is not from Amazon:
- Receiving an order confirmation for a product that you didn’t buy. If you are not sure, go to Your Orders and see if the order matches any you got there.
- Getting a request to update your payment information that is not linked to Amazon or one of its services.
- Getting a prompt or request to install different software on your device (like a “tracking software”).
How to Report Email Scam Amazon?
To do this:
- Start a new email message and attach the scam or phishing email to it. If you are reporting a suspicious website, copy/paste the link somewhere in the body.
- Send or forward the email to [email protected].
Note that Amazon won’t directly reply to you about the Amazon scam email, but you will get an automatic confirmation instead.
Look out for This Amazon Prime Email Scam
Today Amazon Prime has 150 million subscribers, according to a VentureBeat report. This makes it a “prime target” for scammers and hackers.
The most recent Amazon Prime email scam was reported by HowtoGeek this October and has the subject line “Resolving issue & completing your order”.
In a typical scamming fashion, the user is asked to click a link to update their billing information. This will then take them to a realistic-looking but fake address where they are prompted through several steps to enter their full name, street address, city, state, zip code and phone number and then “update your payment method” (in other words leave your credit card number to the scammers), before leaving your email.
If you do all of these, congratulations, you’ve just given a bunch of information to hackers.
Another Amazon scam email hit UK users also in October.
Here’s the message:
Of course, clicking on the “Verify Account” button would then lead to a phishing website from which the hackers could steal personal and financial information from the user.
You can notice the poor grammar throughout the message.
The fake emails also featured similar branding, font and layout that Amazon normally uses, making them difficult to detect at first glance.
Action Fraud UK issued a warning on Twitter, saying:
“SCAM WARNING: Watch out for these fake Amazon emails, we received over 270 reports in just one day. If you receive a suspicious email, you can report it by forwarding the email to – [email protected] #PhishyFridays.”
Commenting on the latest scam attempt, a spokesperson from Amazon said:
“We take phishing attempts on our customers seriously, and will never call a customer for payment outside of our website. If a customer has concerns or receives a call they believe is not from Amazon, they can check the Amazon.co.uk help pages for guidance.”
So, do that if you are not sure about it.
Always look carefully and double-check the emails you get. They might not be from who they say they are and can steal your personal or financial information.
You can also check out some of the best anti-phishing solutions in this article that you can use to protect your emails.