June 16, 2024

Regardless of the high self-assurance you have in not falling for Internet fraud, it’s always prudent to exercise extreme caution when checking emails and text messages from unknown sources. This is particularly critical for Verizon customers at the moment, given the prevalence of a new phishing scam aimed at them, as noticed by the cybersecurity company Fortra.

As Fortra reports (via FOX59 News), the instigators of this phishing attack have been distributing emails that seem valid, even upon initial inspection. Interestingly, these deceptive emails manage to bypass spam filters and land in recipients’ inboxes by utilizing the 33mail.com private email creator to mask the sender’s real email address. Here are some details to be mindful of:

  • Sender’s Email: member@surveymonkeyuser.com  
  • Reply-to Address: ms365@verizservus.33mail.com  
  • Sender’s Name: ms365@veriservus.33mail.com 
  • Sender’s Website: surveymonkeyuser.com  
  • Redirect: hxxps[://]sites[.]google[.]com/view/vrz39289289823/home

The first indication that something is amiss with this email is the sender’s name not matching the email address. If you open the email, it seems to contain an invoice with a peculiar link that seems to redirect to a Prezi presentation.

Be on your guard for this Verizon phishing scam. Image source: Fortra

Should you click on the link — which you most certainly should not — you will be taken to a page hosted on Google Sites that tries to replicate an Office 365 sign-in page for Verizon. By this time, the scam should be apparent to you, but if you proceed to input your Office 365 (now Microsoft 365) login information, they will likely be passed directly to the culprit behind the phishing operation.

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Even though it’s not a particularly well-executed phishing operation, you are now equipped with the knowledge of its existence. Turn a blind eye to emails received from unfamiliar sources, more so if the sender’s name is as bizarre as “ms365@veriservus.33mail.com.” The last thing we want is for anyone to fall victim to such a lackluster scammer.