My spam filter caught this email attempt to get malware into my computer but, in the off chance yours doesn’t, I figured I’d share what I encountered so you’d be forewarned.
The subject line of the email was “are you serious?”
The text that followed was typically inarticulate and generic:
I tried to contact your company by emailing to the contact us.
I got a reply telling me to suck.
I have googled your email address.
I am attaching you the email exchange that happened and the swearing.
Please let me know what to do.
There was indeed a Microsoft Word document attached called “email_exchange.doc” which, of course is suspicious as it gets. One never opens any sort of attachment from a source you don’t know and trust, and Microsoft Office documents are hotbeds of malware delivery. Out of curiosity I opened this one in a raw code editor (don’t try this at home) and verified that yes, indeed, there was no actual text but quite a bit of code.
Just reiterating an important rule: NEVER OPEN EMAIL ATTACHMENTS FROM A SOURCE YOU DO NOT KNOW AND TRUST. For that matter, be suspicious of all attachments because you cannot know whether the email is being spoofed to look like it came from a normally-trusted sender. If you really must engage the sender, respond and ask them to re-send the information in plain text as part of the email itself, or otherwise strike up a dialogue where they can satisfy you the attachment is legitimate and safe. In most cases, if this is an email “out of the blue,” you are safe in simply deleting it and forgetting you ever saw it.
It’s a jungle out there!
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