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Phishing is when a fraudster uses a fake email, text or website that looks familiar in an attempt to get you to share your personal information.

Phishing—not to be confused with the fun, relaxing sport involving a rod and reel—is when a fraudster uses a fake email, text or website that looks familiar in an attempt to get you to share your personal information, according to the Federal Trade Commission. Learn how to read between the lies and keep yourself safe from email phishing scams.

The phishing emails with the most attractive hooks—or email subject lines—include security, package delivery, password expiration/change and company-related notices, according to cybersecurity firm KnowBe4. Online shopping confirmation emails are also high on the list of common phishing email scams.


Take a look at the most enticing lures:

  1. Official Data Breach Notification: 14%
  2. UPS Label Delivery 1ZBE312TNY00015011: 12%
  3. IT Reminder: Your Password Expires in Less Than 24 Hours: 12%
  4. Change of Password Required Immediately: 10%
  5. Please Read – Important Information from Human Resources: 10%
  6. All Employees: Update your Healthcare Info: 10%
  7. Revised Vacation & Sick Time Policy: 8%
  8. Quick Company Survey: 8%
  9. A Delivery Attempt was Made: 8%
  10. Email Account Updates: 8%

Follow these tips to avoid the shiny lure of phishing emails.

  • Refuse the bait—don’t click links. As tempting as it may be to click the link to see where your package is, it’s safer to go to the website you ordered from (Amazon, com, etc.) to track your package.
  • Use a phish finder. Copy and paste the email subject line, sender name or sender email address into your favorite search engine to see if the company—and email—are the real deal.
  • Don’t let your lines get crossed—give them a call. When in doubt, give the Human Resources or Information Technology department a call to see if there have been any recent policy updates or if you really need to change your password.

How Verve Can Help

If you think you may have opened a phishing email, clicked on a fake confirmation link and entered your financial information, call Verve immediately at 800.448.9228. One of our team members can help check your account for purchases you did not make and safeguard your account against fraud. You can also rest assured that if our fraud block system, OmniShield, detects potentially fraudulent use of your card, a temporary hold will be placed on it, and you’ll receive a text message with details about the suspicious transaction.

It’s Verve’s goal—in line with our guiding 7 Cooperative Principles—to provide education, training and information to help our members stay financially fit. Verve is committed to keeping our members educated when it comes to their finances by providing details on financial risks and ways to stay safe. Help your friends and family stay safe against phishing email scams by sharing this blog post.