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Protection against email phishing scams

To all campus community:

 We have noticed an increased number of users contacting us regarding phishing emails.  It is important that you recognize these scams so your Jewell account is not compromised or you don’t become victims of phishing.  We would like to share some information about how to recognize phishing emails and best practices of prevention.


What is Phishing?


Phishing is the criminal practice of attempting to trick someone into giving away personal information by masquerading as a trusted source.  Cybercriminals increasingly use social engineering to convince users to install malicious software or hand over your personal information under false pretenses. 


Never send your password in email!


Information Technology will NEVER ask you to send your password in email.


Some phishing emails ask you to “verify your account” by replying with your username and password.  In reality, if you send your password in email, you are giving it to the phishing scammers.


Be cautious when asked to log in with your username and password.


Be suspicious of emails that ask you to “log in” to verify your account.


Some phishing emails include links to websites where you are asked to log in.  The idea is that by logging in, you are “verifying your account” so that you don’t lose it.  In reality, the website is a fake, just like the email.


What should I do if I get phished?


If you replied to a phishing email and send your username and password, you should change your password immediately.


How to recognize Phishing Emails


Unfortunately, as phishing attacks become more sophisticated, it is very difficult for the average person to tell if a message is fraudulent.  However, there are things you can look for:

•         Subject Lines

Here are some example subject lines from phishing emails sent to William Jewell College:

•         “E-mail Account Maintenance”

•         “Web Email Account Update”

•         “Urgent”

•         “BULK”

•         “25GB space”

•         From: Addresses

Check the From: and To: address in emails you receive.  Official William Jewell College emails are sent From: email addresses that end with @william.jewell.edu.  When in doubt, please forward the suspicious  email to spam@william.jewell.edu or contact Information Technology staff in verifying the authenticity of an email before you act on it.



•         Email Messages

Look for suspicious phrases like these:

•         “Verify your email address or your account will be deactivated.”

•         “Upgrade your account.”

•         “Confirm your email account.”

•         “Validate your mailbox.”

Information Technology will NEVER ask you to click a link to verify, confirm, or validate your account.

•         Web Addresses

Check the web address of any website that asks you to log in or enter personal information.  William Jewell College will never ask you to log in with your username and password on a non-Jewell website.


The domain name portion of official Jewell websites usually ends with jewell.edu. Occasionally, Jewell websites will end with .org or .com and may not conform to standard Jewell domain names. When in doubt, please contact Information Technology for assistance in verifying the authenticity of a website before logging in.

•         Attachments

Many phishing schemes ask you to open attachments, which can then infect your computer with malicious software.  Be sure not to open attachments in suspicious emails.  


Best Practices to help protect you from phishing and online fraud

•         Never reply to emails that request your personal information.  Be very suspicious of any email from a business or a person that asks for your personal information or emails that send your personal information and asks you to update or confirm it.

•         Don’t click on links in suspicious email. When you move your mouse over a link, the web address is displayed at the bottom of the window.  This is a great way of checking things out before you click.

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