I Might Be the Victim of Identity Theft.

I recently got an interesting email from PayPal. They said someone tried to access my account from overseas. First of all, I do NOT have a PayPal account, at least to my present knowledge. And I have never been overseas. This is apparently a case of identity theft.

What I want now from this post, is some good advice. I replied to this email, to PayPal, explaining to them I don’t even think I have an account with them. My email was returned, so I sent it again. What else should I do? Realize though, at the present time I am only taking a wait and see approach to the matter. Also I did something perhaps I shouldn’t have. PayPal said if this was my account, to click on a link and follow the instructions. I clicked on the link, but I didn’t get thru. So I closed the window.

Again, any advice anyone has to give would be appreciated. And thank you to all who reply :slight_smile:

Sounds like it was a phishing e-mail to me. But of course, since you didn’t get through, we’ll never know. Although you wouldn’t have had anything to offer the other end, anyway.

But I wouldn’t worry about it; it sounds like the crime was attempted, rather than already done.

The email wasn’t from PayPal, it’s just someone using a shotgun approach to steal PayPal user names / logins. Ignore it.

I agree, probably a phisher. Forward it to spoof@paypal.com. If it is accurate, they will tell you, else they will confirm is is a phishing attempt.

Did they open as Dear Paypal subscriber or some BS like that? Paypal will use your real full name when they contact you.

My husband got the same email and he has never had a paypal account. It is a phishing scam. Delete, destroy and deny :slight_smile:

Same happened with me a few times.

Do not respond to it. It is phishing.

Definitely phishing scam. I got one from PayPal telling me my account had been suspended due to it being accessed by an unknown party, and to click on a link to verify my information. I do have a PayPal account, so rather than click their link I went straight to PayPal itself and found my account in perfect order.

Sneaky bastards.

Don’t be surprised if you get them from banks that you don’t have accounts with too. I’ve had quite a few that are supposedly from various American banks over the past few years (rather amusing since I’m Canadian). As others said, it’s phishing, not identity theft (but may turn into identity theft if you’re foolish enough to click on such links).

DO NOT EVER click on a link in an e-mail advising you of “fraud on your account”, “you need to update your account information”, or for that matter ANYTHING that suggests you click on a link in an e-mail to get to your bank/paypal/e-bay/any other financial institution account. If you’re concerned type the organization’s web address directly into your browser’s address bar and investigate from there (or, even better, phone them up).

Thank your lucky stars that you did not get through on the link you mentioned.

I click on these links all the time, but I use a Mac, so I’m invincible… :wink:

Really? Are you sure? From PayPal? How do you know? Because it said, “from PayPal”?

Yes, I’m being snarky. But if you immediately assumed that it was from PayPal, welcome to the club of victims, suckers, and losers. The line forms to the right under the sign that says, “Gullible”. Please have all your cash ready to hand over to save time.

The moral is: Be suspicious. The world is full of crooks and most of them are now using the Internet to attack YOU.

Oh, yeah? Think those crooks care what kind of computer you have if you give them your name and password? URLs and passwords work on Macs, too, y’know.

I didn’t say** I TYPED MY INFORMATION IN** !!
I just said I “clicked” on them…

I’m always interested in seeing what the scammers are up to. Sometimes I’ll type in false information, as if it helps…

Clicking is a good way to get infected by malware. Do not click.

I get at least one of these e-mails at my office every week, and I’ve never had a Paypal account. I’ve also received e-mails purporting to come from various banks and asking me to log in and update my account information. It’s a phishing scam.

I can understand why you’d be concerned, though. If you think it’s really possible that you’ve been the victim of identity theft, you can always request a copy of your credit report.

You might also want to consider signing up for a service that monitors your credit and sends you e-mail alerts if anything new or unusual pops up (for instance, someone looking into your credit without authorization, adding a new address, or opening an account in your name). I signed up for one of these services about six months ago. The peace of mind is definitely worth the $4.95 a month.

Actually, this has gotten me a little worried because on second reflection, I think I did click all the way to some site. It still claimed it was PayPal once I got there. But it looked a little funny, so I closed the window. So far nothing bad has happened with my computer, although I did log out suddenly a short while ago. Now what do I do :slight_smile: .

Curious? My advice is click on something potentially dangerous only if you have sufficient knowledge to repair any damage you have done or caused to be done. By the time you detect it, it’s already too late.

And you just confirmed that your email address is 1) Valid. 2) Used by someone stupid enough to not just open spam but actually click on links in spam email.

That’s some nice police work there Lou.


Two more bits o’ advice:

  1. You ought to have at least two checking accounts at different, unaffiliated banks. That way, if you do get nailed at one bank, you already have a working account with some money in it so your life can proceed more smoothly.

  2. Change your name. Jeez, do you have any idea how many people are named “Jim B.”? No wonder the wolves are at your heels…