Spam emails are annoying and often contain viruses or other threats that can leave your computer vulnerable to cyber attacks. Fortunately, spam blockers prevent most of these messages from reaching your inbox. Still, it’s important to know how to check if an email is spam and what signs to watch for.
1. Look at the email address.
Check if email is spam often use fake email addresses to fool you into believing that the message is legitimate. Take a close look at the name before the @ sign in the email address, particularly if it contains a string of numbers or is an extremely long, complicated string. Also, note whether the email address is from a free Internet Service Provider or from a well-known business. If it is from a well-known business, beware of unusual punctuation and characters in the email address or a misspelling.
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Often, the content of spam emails will seem too good to be true or will include urgent requests for action. Beware of emails that ask you to click on links, open cloud storage files or download attachments. Many of these emails are phishing scams that attempt to steal personal information and leave you exposed to malware and other cyber attacks.
Professional organizations, such as your bank, will never request personal information in an unsolicited email. If a company does contact you, always reach out to them directly using the contact information provided on their website.