This email, which looks like it was sent by PayPal, claims that you have made an order via Facebook for a Farmville VIP membership. The email states that, if you did not authorise this supposed order, you should click a link to cancel it.
PayPal Did Not Send The Email
However, the email is not from PayPal. Instead, it is a phishing scam designed to steal your personal and financial information. By sending a PayPal lookalike message that lists a transaction that you know nothing about, the scammers hope to trick you into clicking the “cancel” link without due forethought.
Such simple social engineering tricks can be very effective and criminals use them constantly in their scam messages.
Link Opens Fake PayPal Website
If you fall for the ruse and click the link, you will be taken to a fraudulent website that asks you to log in with your PayPal email address and password.
After logging in on the bogus website, you will be taken to a fake form that asks you to verify your account by supplying your credit card details, your date of birth, and your home address.
After you fill in the form and click the “Agree & Continue” button, you may then be redirected to the genuine PayPal website.
Scammers Can Now Use Your Infomation For Fraud and Identity Theft
The criminals can now collect all of the information you provided on the fake forms and use it to hijack your PayPal account and make fraudulent transactions with your credit card. They may also be able to collect enough personal information from the fake forms and from inside your PayPal account to allow them to steal your identity.
PayPal Customers Regularly Targeted In Phishing Attacks
Scams like this are very common. Because PayPal conducts most of its business online and via email, scammers almost continually target the company’s customers via fake PayPal emails and websites.
Be wary of any email that purports to be from PayPal and claims that you must click a link or open an attached file to cancel a transaction, rectify a supposed account problem, or update account details. PayPal has information about phishing scams and how to report them on its website.
PayPal Messages Will Always Address You by Name
It’s worth noting that genuine PayPal emails will always address you by name. They will never use generic greetings such as “Dear Customer”. Nor will genuine emails omit your name as some scam messages do.
Always Login in Via Web or App
It is always safest to login to your PayPal account by entering the web address into your browser’s address bar or via an official app rather than by clicking a link in a message.
Text Transcript of the Scam Email
Your order is waiting to be approved.
Your online order made on facebook.com to Farm Ville Games Inc. must be approved in order to be processed faster, othewise it will take up to 24hours to come online.
If the order was unauthorized login now and cancel the order.But don’t forget to fill all the requested fields.Item Type:
VIP for 3 months
$31.00 EUROnline order waiting to be approved.
Importance NoticeAfter considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.
These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.
Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.
And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.
When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.
I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.
A Big Thank YouI would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.
I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.
Closing DateHoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.
Thank you, one and all!