AG’s office warns of scam

Published 7:00 am Friday, July 22, 2016

This week, Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood warned Mississippians about an email scam targeting business owners and consumers.
The email circulating claims to be from the “Office of the Attorney General,” a release from the AG states. The link in the email installs damaging malware on computers.
According to the release, the email states, “that a complaint has been filed against their business and includes a link for the recipient to click to view the complaint.”
Furthermore, the email gives consumers a timeline and instructions to file a rebuttal, the release states.
The email states that the office “cannot render legal advice nor can it represent individuals or intervene on their behalf in any civil or criminal matter.”
The AG suggests recipients delete this email immediately.
“We have received numerous calls and reports to our office this week from consumers who have received this email. In one report, the recipient clicked on the link provided, which in turn wiped out her computer,” Hood said in the release. “The email is fraudulent. Our office does not send requests for responses to complaints by email. Consumers should not open any links or attachments, nor should they reply back to this email.”
Hood also advises anyone who receives suspicious emails or text messages to check for errors in spelling, grammar and wording. Errors such as these are clear signs of a scam, Hood added in the release.
In addition to swift deletion of the fraudulent emails, Hood suggests in the release that consumers alert business owners that they their name is being used in a phishing scam.
“We appreciate those who came forward to let us know that a scammer was impersonating our office,” Hood said in the release. “When consumers are vigilant in their efforts to avoid malware, computer viruses and potential identity theft, it makes our jobs easier.”
Individuals who have contributed information in response to a phishing scam are encouraged to contact the Consumer Protection Division of the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office at 800-281-4418.

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