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Scam alert: Fake email from your bank could rob you blind

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Theo Thimou

A new email purporting to be from Bank of America claims that your online ID is about to be terminated because of too many invalid log-in attempts.

But you know the drill: If you get this in your inbox, you’ve got to terminate it!

Bank of America email scam looks legit

Scam alert: Fake email from your bank could rob you blind

The scammers are so slick these days. With this scam, they’ve perfectly duplicated what appears to be an official email from Bank of America.

They’ve got the red and blue color scheme down pat. They’ve got the logo looking just right. But if you get this email, there are a few dead giveaways that it isn’t legit.

First, check the address where it’s being sent from. In the example we received, it was from a real oddball address —xs_03_ods@xos.com — that clearly has nothing to do with Bank of America.

Want another clue? Mouse over the “click here” or “sign in” and you’ll see the page it wants to redirect you to is not BankofAmerica.com! The one we saw wanted to redirect you to an unknown website in the Philippines.

If you make the mistake of clicking through, DO NOT ENTER ANY INFO! If you do, you’ll fall right into the hands of the criminals who will clean out your account.

Remember, the warning signs are there if you know what to look for.

This scam is not specific to Bank of America. It can happen with crooks masquerading as any financial organization you do business with. The key is to know what to look for to stay safe!

11 ways to protect yourself while doing mobile banking

Keep your operating system updated. Always make sure you install the latest software updates from your operating system. These often include security and protection updates to help protect your device.

Don’t mess with your OS. Resist the temptation to fool around with your operating system. People sometimes mess around with their OS in trying to download apps that aren’t sanctioned. Don’t do it!

Keep your malware updated. Make sure you install malware protection and make sure that it is updated. Clark’s Virus, Spyware and Malware Protection Guide is a great way to find free and effective options.

Skip the public Wi-Fi. You should never do any financial transactions on free public Wi-Fi. Period!

Don’t click on strange texts. Android users got a real scare last year when a report emerged that they could be hacked by text message.

Only trust downloads directly from financial websites. When it comes to downloading mobile banking apps, be sure you only install your bank, credit union or brokerage firm’s official apps that you find at their websites.

Turn off auto-fetching. Disable auto-fetching of MMS for any messaging apps you use. Outlook.com has a step-by-step guide with screenshots for Hangouts and Messenger, among others.

Remember, authentication is your friend. Use authentication features such as fingerprint or facial identification. This dual or two-step authentication provides an added layer of security.

Check your statements diligently. Go through your bank statement line-by-line on a daily basis. Report any suspicious charges immediately.

Finally, have a different password for each financial site. You’re going to need a unique password for each financial account you have: Bank, credit union, brokerage account, etc. That way if one is compromised, the crooks won’t have automatic access to every financial account in your life. Here are seven ways to create safer passwords for all your accounts.

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