How to Identify Phising E-mail

This morning, I received another email claiming to be from Yahoo! asking for my Username, Password, Date of Birth, and Location.

I thought that this was another Yahoo phishing email. The letter asked me to reply those personal details within 24 hours. This mail is just one of those very suspicious phishing scams that you might encounter in the near future. So generally, I will give you tips on identifying a phishing email.

1. By just looking at the content you can see who sent the email or from whom system does the email originate. It could be sent through the E-mail systems of Yahoo!, Google, AOL, MSN, etc. In this case, the email came from [email protected] The question is why would Yahoo! use an email account under AOL’s domain? Sounds crazy, right? If it’s really a Yahoo! Service then it’s more likely to use a Yahoo! mail or specifically like this email address – [email protected] where you are going to forward the suspected phishing emails using Yahoo! e-mail system.

2. When you click on the reply button – you will see the recipient of the information you are sending. In my case, the e-mail I am suppose to send will go to this address: [email protected] … You will notice that it’s an email address from Google’s domain. It’s very impossible that Google will do this thing. So it’s basically from a spammer who registered a GMAIL account with username SERVICECENTERS.MAILBOTS just to confuse a sender as if he/she is sending information to Yahoo! Service. Or, they might also using personalized email domain like what hosted on Mail.com.

3. If you want more details on the email, you can look for the full message header. You can see there some information about the sender or return path of the email, the IP addresses, message ID, the recipient of you reply, etc. To do that, open the email and look for the Standard Header. It is located on the upper right side of the email. Click on the drop-down arrow button beside the word “Standard Header”, and then select “Full Header”. The Full Header content may look like this:

From YAHOO CENTERS Wed May 27 21:11:12 2009
Return-Path:
Authentication-Results: mta276.mail.re2.yahoo.com from=aol.com; domainkeys=neutral (no sig); from=aol.com; dkim=neutral (no sig)
Received: from 208.180.40.73 (EHLO omta01.suddenlink.net) (208.180.40.73)
by mta276.mail.re2.yahoo.com with SMTP; Wed, 27 May 2009 14:11:32 -0700
Received: from User ([41.191.108.130]) by omta01.suddenlink.net
(InterMail vM.7.08.05.00 201-2186-139-20081114) with ESMTP
id <[email protected]>;
Wed, 27 May 2009 16:11:27 -0500
Reply-To:
From: “YAHOO CENTERS”
Subject: YAHOO ALERTS!!
Date: Wed, 27 May 2009 22:11:12 +0100
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/html;
charset=”Windows-1251″
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
Message-Id: <20090527211127.jtrj11865.omta01.sudden[email protected]>
Content-Length: 6738

You will simply copy and paste this Full Header into an email tracking software, or you can go to an online email tracking service like this trace email and email tracking online tool . Please be reminded that I can’t guarantee the reliability of these online services. But I assure you it’s working.

Again, if you’ve received an email claiming to be from Yahoo! that asks for your password or other private information, you’ve likely received a “phishing” email. These emails typically contain links that appear to go to a Yahoo! site but actually not!

If you are uncertain about any “official” email you’ve received, do not click on any links in the email. The safest way to visit a website is to type the site’s address directly in the address bar of your web browser.

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Bert Padilla

Founding-Editor of Cebu Tech Blogger where he shares insights in eCommerce, Digital Marketing, Ad Ops, Tech, Startups, Technopreneurship, Life Goals and Hacks. He's the brainchild and ninja of a Cebu-based digital agency, TekWorx.Digital, with ventures TekWorx, (eCommerce and Digital Marketing), AdWorx (Outsourced Ad Ops for Publishers) and BlogWorx (full-fledged Blog Development service). Read his Full Curriculum Vitae. For training and consultancy, services, speaking engagements, blog partnerships or media invites, click here. Alternatively, get in touch with him on Messenger.

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