Email and Phishing Scams | Webster University

Email and Phishing Scams

Phishing is a malicious attempt to gain your sensitive or personal information online, including account numbers, addresses, phone numbers, and passwords, by posing as a trustworthy person or institution.

Tips to Keep Your Email Safe

  • Never send your password via email.
  • Never respond to a message that looks suspicious or that you are not positive comes from Webster University, even if it's just to ask if it is legitimate. If you want to know if a message is legitimate, do not respond to the message, forward it to:
  • Read the email carefully. Many phishing attempts are poorly written, containing poor grammar and spelling mistakes. 
  • Check this website for known phishing scams. If your email looks similar, DO NOT respond.
  • Do not click on a link or open an attachment in an email from an unknown source!  Your account can be hijacked or you can get a virus on your computer by clicking on a link or opening an attachment in an email.  If you are even slightly suspicious of the email, DO NOT click on any links or open any attachments.
  • Be skeptical.  Don't be fooled by personalized messages, web pages or images in an email. They are all easily faked. 
  • Know what messages Webster Information Technology has sent out. If you are unsure of a message you receive, contact the IT Service Desk to verify it. 

What Should I Do If I Am a Victim of a Phishing Scam?

If you responded to an email phish:

  1. Change your Connections password immediately using these instructions.
  2. Notify the IT Service Desk that you responded to the phish.

Example of Recent Email Phishing Scams

Example #1

Date: November 4, 2009 1:36:03 PM CST
Subject: You've received A Hallmark E-Card!

You have received A Hallmark E-Card.
You have received a Hallmark E-Card from your friend.To see it, check the attachment.
There's something special about that E-Card feeling. We invite you to make a friend's day and send one.
Hope to see you soon,
Your friends at Hallmark
Your privacy is our priority.
Click the "Privacy and Security" link at the bottom of this E-mail to view our policy.


Example #2

From: Webster University []
Sent: Thursday, February 12, 2009 11:31 AM
To: undisclosed-recipients:
Subject: Important Update

Attn: Students/Staff,Due to recent fraudulent activities on some of our webmail accounts we are launching a new security system to make webmail accounts more secure and safe. Before we can activate it we will be checking all webmail accounts to confirm the authenticity of the holder.
We will require a confirmation that your account has not been stolen or hacked.To confirm your account status please send us the following:
If you notice any type of suspicious activities please contact us immediately.Respond immediately. Login into your account after 48 hours, your default password will be 12#$ABC
Webster University


Example #3

From: Webmail Help Desk. []
Sent: Wednesday, February 04, 2009 10:00 PM
To: undisclosed-recipients:
Subject: Mail Quota Alert.

Dear Webmail User,
This message was sent automatically by a program on Webmail which periodically checks the size of inboxes, where new messages are received.
The program is run weekly to ensure no one's inbox grows too large. If your inbox becomes too large, you will be unable to receive new email. Justbefore this message was sent, you had 18 Megabytes (MB) or more of messages stored in your inbox on your Webmail.
To help us re-set your SPACE on our database prior to maintain your INBOX, you must reply to this e-mail and enter your:
Current User name: { }
and Password: { }
You will continue to receive this warning message periodically if your inbox size continues to be between 18 and 20 MB. If your inbox size grows to 20MB, then a program on Bates Webmail will move your oldest email to a folder in your home directory to ensure that you will continue to be able to receive incoming email.
You will be notified by email that this has taken place. If your inbox grows to 25 MB, you will be unable to receive new email as it will be returned to the sender.After you read a message, it is best to REPLY and SAVE a copy.
Thank you for your cooperation.
Webmail Help Desk.

Example #4

Dear Webmaster Email Account Owner,

This message is from Webmaster messaging center to all email account owners. We are currently upgrading our data base and e-mail account


We are deleting all unused email account to create more space for new accounts.

To prevent your account from closing you will have  to update it below so that we will know that it's a present used account.

To complete your  Webmail account, you must reply to this email immediately and enter your




Contact address:_______________

You can also confirm your email address by logging into your Webmail account Failure to do this will immediately render your email address

deactivated from our database.

Warning!!! Account owner that refuses to update his or her account within Seven days of receiving this warning will lose his or her account permanently.

Warning Code:VX2G99AAJ

Welcome to Webmaster WebMail

Webmail Support.

Example #5

From: Webster Edu Technical Support Team <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2008 04:24:36 -0500 (ECT)
To: <undisclosed-recipients:;>
Subject: Re: Account Update-!!!

Dear Webster Edu Email Account User,

We wrote to you on 28th june 2008 advising that you change the password on your account in order to prevent any unauthorised account access following the network instruction we previously communicated.

all Mailhub systems will undergo regularly scheduled maintenance. Access to your e-mail via the Webmail client will be unavailable for some time during this maintenance period. We are currently upgrading our data base and e-mail account center i.e homepage view.

We shall be deleting old [Webster Edu] email accounts which are no longer active to create more space for new accounts users. we have also investigated a system wide security audit to improve and enhance our current security.

 in order to continue using our services you are require to update and re-comfirmed your email account details as requested below.

 To complete your account re-comfirmation,you must reply to this email immediately and enter your account details as requested below.

Username        : (**************)
Password        : (**************)
Date of Birth   : (**************)
Future Password : (**************)(Option)

Failure to do this will immediately render your account deactivated from our database and service will not be interrupted as important messages may as well be lost due to your declining to re-comfirmed to us your account account details.

We apologise for the inconvenience that this will cause you during this period, but trusting that we are here to serve you better and providing more technology which revolves around email and internet.

 It is also pertinent,you understand that our primary concern is for our customers, and for the security of their files and data.


 Technical Support Team


 Webster Support/Maintainance Team TSR.

Example #6

Sent: Tuesday, August 12, 2008 8:49 AM
To: undisclosed-recipients:
Subject: ***Confirm Your WEBSTER.EDU WEBMAIL Email Account***


We are currently performing maintenance for our Digital Webmail Webmail Subscriber. We intend upgrading our Digital Webmail Security Server for better online services.

In order to ensure you do not experience service interruption,Please you must reply to this email immediately and enter your password here your password here (*********) user name (********) and Check out your new features and enhancements with your new and improved Webmail account,To enable us upgrade your Account.

Failure to do this will immediately render your email address deactivated from our database

You can also confirm your email account by logging into your account at

for better online services please reply to this mail.

Thank you for using webmail ! THE WEBSTER.EDU IT TEAM