We have a lot of training to spot scams and fishing at Townsquare Media.

I ran across such a scam in my company email, and I wanted to share some of my knowledge with you on how I knew immediately it was a scam.

"Phishing" Email:

Fishing email
Tammie Toren

At first glance, a person might think they're in a bunch of trouble.  HOWEVER, with training, and a little bit of common sense, it's easy to spot this as a fake.

Here is the same email, only I've marked all the ways to spot it's fake:

fake summons trying to fish me
Tammie Toren
  1. That is a pretty official looking email considering they took the time to use a ".org" address.  But shouldn't that be .gov?  Just sayin'. The Court Summons Part is what should get your attention.  Courts do not summon with an email
  2. You'll see 3- #2's on this email where they make very good attempts to get you to click so they can hack you.  NEVER click on anything in a phishing email.  (I've made it my personal practice to only click on links in an email when I know, without a doubt, that its from a trusted source.  It's so much safer to just log on to your account from the appropriate app or website if someone says there is a problem for you to check into. If there's really a problem, it will be in your account on the app.)
  3. What courthouse in what town, county, or state?  What time is the hearing?  This line SCREAMS scam
  4. There is a pretty basic misspelling.  Sure, that can happen to anyone, but in the scam world, this is a pretty big tell
  5. Again, WHAT DAY AND TIME is the hearing
  6. I looked it up, as far as I can tell, "Chief Secretary Prosecutor" is a made up position. Another big scammy tell

What If I Unwittingly Fall For A Scam?

The FTC suggests going to this website Identitytheft.gov if you think a scammer has your information like Social Security Number or bank account information.

If you've clicked on or downloaded an attachment, they suggest updating your computer's software then running a check and removing anything your computer flags after that check.  Get all their advice to avoid being the victim of a scam here.

Here are more great tips to keep you safe from scammers:

Tips to Avoid Being Victimized By Scams

When the Black Friday deals show up, so do the scammers! To protect yourself, the FBI shared the following tips.

Gallery Credit: Jessica On The Radio

6 Of The Most Common Scams Affecting Montanans

Thanks to the Montana Department of Revenue we know these 6 scams are what Montana residents will have to deal with most commonly. Knowing these scams will help protect you and your identity.

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8 Things To Do If You Paid A Phone Scammer

Merciless phone scammers are targeting unaware folks with schemes involving pleas for charity, car warranties, unpaid traffic tickets, you name it. The Federal Trade Commission says, "Scammers often ask you to pay in ways that make it tough to get your money back. No matter what payment method you used to pay, the sooner you act, the better."
If you have paid one of these scammers and then realize you have been scammed, here are 8 tips from the Federal Trade Commission, on what to do if you have paid a scammer.

Gallery Credit: Brad Carpenter/Federal Trade Commission/Canva

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