Most Common Email Scams

Email Spoofing. Some scammers are impersonating the real name of college leaders, professors, donors and the like. Double-check the email address (not just the first and last name) to make sure a sender is legitimate. These scammers have tended to ask for iTunes and other gift cards via email — be skeptical! Often the scammer will ask you to go to a local store that sells gift cards, indicate they are in a hurry, and after purchasing the card, direct you to scratch off numbers and send them a photo with the numbers. Below is an example of the format and how the scammers are spoofing the email. Please forward these to T&I upon receipt — these actors usually email multiple campus staff at once and we use your report to protect everyone.


From: Chris Clunie <>

Sent: Thursday, December 6, 2018 8:41 AM

To: Cooke, Dick <>

Subject: purchase


Good Morning,

  Are you in the office ?  if not please I have an important errand i need you to do for me outside.I am in a meeting i won’t be able to pick a call.


Blackmail Scams. Another common scam method of late is a threatening email that claims to have some embarrassing or incriminating information about the recipient that will be released if you don’t do what is asked (typically, to pay a ransom in Bitcoin.) Sometimes, these actors will use a password breached on the Internet somewhere to make you think they’ve hacked your system. Reach out to T&I with a copy if you have any concerns; and, as always, feel free to report messages that are harassing or threatening to Campus Police.


Double-Check Your Duo. Duo two-factor authentication greatly improves security. To stay protected, always double-check that you’re logging into legitimate Davidson sites --,, another trusted site or VPN client only. This prevents cybercrooks from trying to phish your password along with a two-factor passcode or Duo authorization.



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