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I just received a SPAM email that really made me take a second look, as they were very clever in how they made this email look like it had come from the ATO.
While it is pretty obvious that it is not legitimate - even the amount of the refund that is show in pretty ridiculous - I figure it is worth mentioning because of certain aspects that make it look legitimate.
When you look at who the email is from - by clicking on the sender to see the 'from' email address - it certainly looks like the ATO (see the second image below, which shows the 'From' address that shows, which is firstname.lastname@example.org).
Even the link in the body of the emails seems to be a link to the ATO website, since it starts with 'https://www.ato.gov.au/'.
What completely gave this one away as an absolute scam was that, when I inspected the link that was shown, it was actually going to take me a totally different website (certainly not the ATO) that would have immediately downloaded a file to my computer - a file that probably contained a nasty piece of Windows malware (or worse).
Because I am on a Mac, this would not have caused my computer any harm - but the same would not have been true if I was using Windows.
So, don't be fooled if an email 'looks like' it comes from a legitimate source, and perhaps has a link that 'looks like' it is taking you to a legitimate website. What you see is not necessarily what you get!
How did I work out that the link in the email was fake?
To check any link that has been sent in an email, I right-click on it and choose Copy Link.
Then, I open a Word document. Right-click in the body of the new document and choose Paste to paste the copied link into the document. What you will then see is the real address behind the link, instead of the fake address that showed in the email.
Just make sure that you choose the right-click and not the left-click!
Once again, the rule of thumb is to never trust an email that asks you to click a link! (Of course, the exception is the iTandCoffee Newsletter!).
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