Phishing Alert | "#UNUSUAL #ACTIVITY"

Posted April 25, 2016 by Academic and Institutional Technology
Tags: Phishing Attempts

Phishing Alert | "#UNUSUAL #ACTIVITY"

Some employees recently received an email claiming to be from the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. The email tells the recipient that their account was blocked because of unusual activity, and asks them to follow a link and provide their account information in order to unblock it.

This email is a phishing attempt. Do not click on any of the links in the email or provide any information to the sender. Thank you to all who reported this scam.

If you responded to this scam, please contact us at 630.752.4357 (HELP).

Spotting Phishing Attempts

Phishing Example

The image above is a screenshot of this phishing attempt. Several things indicate that this email is not what it claims to be:

  1. The email claims to be from the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, but was sent from an unrelated email account.
  2. The subject line is in all caps and is unusual for a bank. While subject lines like this don't always indicate a phishing attempt, it's still a sign to be more cautious than usual.
  3. Check to see if the URL matches the supposed sender. You can often hover over links to see the URL. This email claimed to be from the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, but the link directed people to an unrelated website.
  4. The email includes a misspelling and some grammatical errors, which is unusual for an official email.
  5. A legitimate email from any institution should include contact information such as an email address and phone number. If you don't see that, it's often because the sender is only pretending to be affiliated with a company or college.

Always exercise caution when responding to emails. If you're not sure whether an email is a phishing attempt or not, contact us or call 630.752.4357 (HELP).