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Don't Be Mistaken for a Phish - Knowledgebase / Security / Phishing - OIT Service Center

Don't Be Mistaken for a Phish

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You may be able to spot a phish when you receive one, but how are you when it's something that you're sending to others? Will they be confident that the message is from you, or will it include some tell-tale sign that causes them to ignore, delete or even report it as phishing?

To help ensure that your email gets read, here are some tips to keep it from being mistaken for a phish. 

  • Proof It: Check your spelling, punctuation, spacing and formatting for mistakes. Are there missing words? This should be standard practice for professional correspondence but is also a good idea for anyone to keep email messages from reflecting poorly on you. If the message is of heightened importance, you may want to have another set of eyes proof it.
  • Lookin' Good: Use a font that is appropriate for your message or standard for other communications to your audience (save Comic Sans for your birthday party invites).
  • Fact Check: Ensure that your facts are correct. Do they match up with information provided in other sources, such as a web page or event posting?
  • 1-2-3 Contact: Include complete contact details, especially a name and phone number if available, to provide an alternative to an email link.
  • Save the Fuzz for Peaches: If you insert images, they should be clear and properly proportioned (no fuzzy and/or squished pics).
  • Land-o-Links? Avoid obvious phishing hallmarks, such as having CLICK HERE links in your email or only offering links as a way to obtain more information and/or respond.
  • Advance Warning: If you will be sending an important business communication that may be directing recipients to a website, such as for a survey or quiz, it may be prudent to send advance warning a day or so early, so that your readers will be expecting it.

If you discover that your account has been compromised and you are actually sending phishing email, read the Compromised? section of the document Spot, Protect Yourself and Recover from Phishing for the steps you need to take to recover it.

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