February 10th 2014
Businesses and individuals have been warned to watch out for new email scam threatening victims with court action.
The authentic-looking phishing email deceives and scares unsuspecting victims into opening an attachment which allegedly contains details of the ‘court notice’. In reality, the attachment is an .exe file (a file that executes when clicked) containing a virus which enables the fraudsters to take control of the infected computer.
The scam has been highlighted by the Business Crime Reduction Centre (BCRC) is a crime prevention specialist in the Yorkshire and Humber region.
According to the Centre's cyber security specialist, Mark Connell: “Provoking a panicked, impulse reaction has become a very common scam technique for cyber criminals. Opening the attachment allows the criminal to spy on the victim, use their computer to commit crime, or steal personal and financial information. This email is difficult to block as the subject headers change frequently.”
The details vary in each email, but the common theme is that it aims to frighten people into clicking before thinking.
If you receive the email, do not open the attachment, reply to or forward it, and do not attempt to contact the senders in any way.
The email has no connection to the Criminal Justice System and anyone receiving the email should report it to Action Fraud using their online fraud reporting tool or calling 0300 123 2040.
BCRC is delivered in partnership with Yorkshire-based charity, People United Against Crime and South Yorkshire, North Yorkshire, West Yorkshire and Humberside Police forces. It is part financed by the EU through the Yorkshire and Humber European Regional Development Fund Programme 2007-2013.