There is a reason why Jeff Bezos is the richest man on earth. It is because he, quite arguably, created a company that made nearly everyone around the globe’s life easier when he founded Amazon. And another great addition to his empire is the Amazon Prime Day, where if you are smart, you can save significantly. But what was created as a blessing for shoppers, has translated into an excellent opportunity for hackers around the world. Since Amazon is known world-wide, and so is its brand, using it to scam people out of not just money, but their identity, is the newest “it” thing for fraudulent emails. The Amazon Prime email scam is no treat for anyone!

First There was the Apple Email Scam

Millions of internet users have either been the target or have been warned of the Apple ID scam that hit last November. The scam sends email users a message that looks exactly like something that would come from Apple. The email warns consumers that their Apple ID made a purchase. And then there is a prompt with a link, asking anyone who didn’t make a particular charge, to sign into their Apple ID and report a problem.

Once you Give Your Password, you Have Given Them Access

The problem is the link is fraudulent. So once you follow the link, sign in using your ID, and supply your password, whoever is behind the email has free access not only to you apple ID and password, but also to the information that Apple has collected about you. And they also have the password that you used to sign in. And since we are all mostly creatures of habit, hackers know to use that password to try to gain access to other, more critical, accounts with highly sensitive information.

With Millions Engaging in Amazon Prime Day, it is a Prime Time to Take Advantage

Because Amazon Prime Day is so successful, prompting Amazon shopper everywhere to take advantage; it is not difficult for hackers to find those who have made purchases. It isn’t just Amazon Prime Day; however, any highly publicized and popular events are a target for hackers.  

Beware of any Email Asking you to Sign in

The good news is that the Amazon Prime Day email scam was not all that successful. Since it was not much more creative than the Apple ID scam, there are a lot of internet users who are already cautious of fraudulent emails. And they are more reticent to follow a link and fill out any information, especially if it is in an email. But, again, being creatures of habit, when you receive an email alerting you that someone might have potentially hacked your information; you want to take immediate action. And sometimes it doesn’t come with the time necessary to process what you should do and how you should proceed.

The Amazon Prime Email Scam…Don’t Follow the Link…Ever

If you do get an email that looks like an official site, no matter how good it appears and how scared you are, don’t follow the link…ever. It is important to take the time to pick up the phone and talk to an actual representative of the company. Or, you can go directly to the site outside of the email. BUT, don’t assume that the site you are entering is the real deal unless you look over the URL address and all information. There are fraudulent sites that appear in an organic search that might not be credible. Hackers are becoming increasingly good at recreating sites to look exactly like their counterpart site and then changing one small, insignificant item, like an “O” to a “0” to fool consumers. 

Proceed With Caution

Hacking is not just a side job; it is a full-time occupation. And because it is, those who engage in the practice, spend a whole lot of time being very good at what they do. Although we would all like to think that we are too smart to be scammed, at some point, there is a great likelihood that you will fall prey. Just remember to keep your wits about you when surfing the net, reading your emails, and leaving any information on your computer. You never know where a link might lead to or who is watching. At Cross Link, we believe in protecting our customers from those who seek to take advantage, and strive always to be one step ahead, when possible.

Contact us today if you have a question about a suspicious email or website. And before you follow any link or sign into anything that doesn’t look quite right, check and double-check. Or, if you can’t decide whether it is real or not, contact us today. And if you receive the Amazon Prime email scam, now you know what not to do!