Gateway Gazette

Fraud Initiated by Email or Text

While telephone calls are the most common method used by scammers, people fall victim more often to frauds initiated through emails and text messages.

Below are the top methods that are used to initiate fraud through email or text:

Spoofing

Scammers use spoofing tactics to change their display name, phone number or email. In emails, hover over the sender’s name, hit reply or look at the email’s properties to reveal the sender’s real email address.

Automation

Scammers use automated messaging to quickly and simultaneously reach a large amount of people. Depending on the information they have already collected, they can:

  • choose who the messages go to
  • decide when to send them
  • personalize them

Email compromise

  • Scammers gain hack into email accounts to impersonate the victim and attempt fraud
  • With consumer accounts, they may send an email to the victim’s entire contact list asking for money urgently due to an emergency
  • With business accounts, they may set up an email forwarding rule to receive a copy of all incoming emails to their own email account

How to protect yourself from fraud initiated by email or text

  • You can report spam under Canada’s anti-spam legislation (CASL)
  • Look at the email address domain:
    • Most businesses have personalized domains
    • Scammers will use free domains, such as @outlook, @hotmail, @gmail etc.
  • Analyze the sender’s email address:
    • Hover over the sender’s name or visible email address to see if it’s been spoofed
    • Look closely at the domain as scammers often use ones that are very close to legitimate ones

Learn more about protecting yourself from scams and fraud.

Browse types of email and text scams.

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