How to Report Amazon Phishing Scams
Amazon and its users are prime targets for phishing attacks by malicious parties. Learn how to detect and report them.
If you've received an email from Amazon that looks suspicious or you’ve detected unusual activity on your account, you may have fallen victim to fraud. Many phishing scams impersonate legitimate businesses, including Amazon. Adding to the already alarming phishing statistics, the Federal Trade Commission revealed that Amazon-related scams account for 35% of complaints about business impersonators.
In this blog post, we'll delve deeper into Amazon fraud reporting and what steps to take to protect yourself from future attacks.
What Is Amazon Phishing Fraud?
Essentially, an Amazon phishing fraud involves a phony representative trying to obtain sensitive personal information from Amazon users (both buyers and sellers). This information may include credit card payment details, personal data, or your account information.
The phisher may also attempt to install malware on the victim's computer. Amazon email scams can be difficult to detect if you are not expecting them. Some scammers use high-quality spoofed emails and websites that imitate Amazon's own customer service portals to the smallest details.
Others are not as meticulous when it comes to imitating Amazon's branding, but their emails may contain Amazon logos or other images that make them appear legitimate.
However, there are a few tell-tale signs that an email or website is not legitimate. If you suspect that you have received an Amazon fraud email, report it to Amazon immediately.
Why Amazon Merchants Are Priority Targets for Scams
Amazon is the world's largest online marketplace, with over 9.7 million sellers worldwide. In recent years, phishing scams targeting merchants have become increasingly sophisticated. Amazon sellers are especially vulnerable to these scams. They often have high sales volume and may be less likely to notice a few fake orders or fake service emails among many legitimate ones.
Scammers will often create phishing emails that appear to be from Amazon in an attempt to gather sensitive data such as login credentials or credit card numbers. By accessing a merchant's account, fraudsters can gain access to information such as payment details from customers and other personal information.
Such actions can lead to a loss of revenue, destroy reputations, and in some cases, Amazon account suspension.
How to Identify Amazon Phishing Email
It's important to report Amazon phishing emails, as they can often steal information that can be used to commit fraud. Amazon phishing emails may look similar to Amazon's correspondence, but a few inconsistencies reveal that an email is not legitimate. Some of the most common red flags include:
- The email is not addressed to you by name.
- The email uses Amazon logos and branding, but the sender's address does not end with "@amazon.com".
- The email asks you for personal information, such as your Amazon account login credentials or credit card number.
- The email contains typos or grammatical errors.
- The email directs you to a website that does not look like Amazon's legitimate website.
If you receive an email containing any red flags, do not click on any links or attachments and do not enter any personal information. Instead, report all phishing attempts to Amazon.
How to Protect Yourself From Amazon Phishing Fraud
There are many different ways to protect yourself from phishing and your average Amazon email scam. The first step is to be aware of the various techniques used by scammers, including phone calls, emails, and fake websites that appear to be official Amazon pages. You should also carefully check online order or delivery confirmations for signs of tampering or poor grammar.
In addition to being cautious, some general security precautions are recommended by cybersecurity experts and Amazon.
- Use a strong and unique password for your Amazon account. Don't reuse passwords across different websites or services. Amazon also recommends using a password manager to generate and store strong passwords.
- Enable two-factor authentication (2FA) on your Amazon account. Amazon will send you a code via text message or the Amazon Authenticator app whenever you try to log in from a new device. This makes it much harder for hackers to gain access to your account, even if they have your password.
- Keep your antivirus software and operating system up to date. Amazon recommends installing all available updates for your operating system and any updates for your Amazon-related apps.
By taking these steps, an Amazon phishing email won’t create havoc with your account, and you’ll stay safe while shopping online.
Amazon Will Never Ask for Sensitive Information
Like any other reputable organization, Amazon won't ever have its representatives asking for your account password, complete credit card information (like CVV and expiration date), or demand your security question and answer.
If you are asked to disclose such information, whether through an email or phone call, it's most likely a scam.
When in doubt, take a moment to call Amazon's customer support line to check if the request is legitimate or report an Amazon phishing attempt if it’s not.
Amazon emails need to end with @amazon.com. However, more sophisticated hackers can spoof the email address, meaning it may look like it came from Amazon when it didn't.
The best course of action is to check the email header to see where the email came from. If you are still in doubt, you can always contact the Amazon fraud department directly and check if the request came from them. If it didn't, make sure to report it.
Clicking on Links or Unsubscribing
The goal of phishing emails is to get you to take action that will compromise your device, account, or personal information. If you check emails on your computer, you can always see if the address leads you towards the intended destination by hovering your cursor over URL links. Most modern browsers will show you the link in the bottom left-hand corner of the window.
It may be more difficult to tell where the link takes you if you're on your mobile phone. In general, if an email looks suspicious, it's best not to click on any links or unsubscribe from any mailing lists. Instead, report the email to Amazon.
If you happen to catch an email supposedly from Amazon in your spam folder, that's because the email's spam filters are working as intended - to stop spoofing Amazon’s email. Phishing attempts or suspicious emails are likely to end up in spam.
However, some disagree with the automated spam filtration process and decide to follow the email instructions. If you do this, you risk revealing financial information or downloading malicious software.
How to Report Amazon Phishing Email
If you received a phishing email purporting to be from Amazon, you should first log in to Amazon's website. From there, access the security section and look for the 'report phishing' option. This will allow you to access Amazon fraud reporting and directly contact the security team, so they can begin investigating the issue.
In your report, be sure to include as much information as possible. Offer details about the suspected phishing email, including its subject line, sender address, and any other tidbits of information that you think might be relevant. It's also a good idea to take screenshots or print out copies of the email itself so that Amazon has all of the necessary information at its disposal.
Once you report phishing to Amazon, it will be reviewed by an Amazon security team member. They may follow up with you directly if they have any further questions or need additional information, but in most cases, you will not hear back from them after submitting your initial report. Regardless, it is critical that you take action right away if you suspect that you have received a phishing email from Amazon. Reporting such emails is the best way to expose the perpetrators.
You can reach out to Amazon through their contact page or by calling 866-216-1075 for free.
The US government agency tasked with handling Amazon scams and frauds is the FTC, and you can contact them online or by phone.
If you are a victim of a phishing email that claimed to be from Amazon, we recommend using Amazon’s fraud reporting online form to submit a complete report. Furthermore, if you have disclosed your payment information, contact your credit card company immediately to prevent unwanted charges on your card.
Your email address will not be published.*