- McAfee scams take advantage of the company’s reputation in cyber security to entice users into a phishing website.
- As a cyber security company, McAfee is completely legitimate.
- Find out how you can avoid these scams and easily identify a phishing email in this guide.
The Internet is undoubtedly one of the best things to have happened to mankind. It made life a lot simpler. But, the Internet is not safe! Thousands of people get scammed every day. McAfee antivirus scams are one of the most common ones doing rounds these days.
Several users reported receiving emails or messages claiming that either their McAfee subscription is about to expire or has already been renewed and they have to pay the subscription fee.
Also, many unsuspecting users clicked on pop-ups that appear on various websites pretty much claiming the same thing. But, is there any truth in that? Also, would an antivirus solution send pop-ups on random websites instead of official communication through email?
We went through a lot of forums and did thorough research to find out all about this, and here’s all you need to know about the McAfee antivirus scams.
McAfee antivirus is one of the best in the market and offers a good level of protection against malware, virus, and cyber attacks. In fact, McAfee is so popular that it has become synonymous with computer security.
McAfee has been around for a long time now and has made a name for it. It’s quick and highly effective at accomplishing tasks. So, in all, the antivirus itself is completely legitimate and safe.
But that doesn’t mean the emails or pops up you receive are from McAfee. If you or an acquaintance has ever received a phishing email, do read the next section to keep yourself protected from McAfee antivirus scams.
Some attacks are unfortunately very well disguised. We suggest you use an antivirus like ESET Internet Security because it has a strong anti-phishing filter that blocks even hard to recognize phishing attempts.
How do I stop McAfee email scams?
1. Never click on unknown links
One of the most important things to remember is to never click on unknown or unreliable links displayed in emails. In the case of McAfee email scams, after the users clicked on the link, they were asked to provide their personal information. This is a big no!
As soon as you do that, scammers can misuse this information. Many users also provided their credit card details to pay for the McAfee subscription and were subsequently charged an exorbitant amount.
Always check the links provided in an email. You can do so by hovering the cursor over it or copying it to a word processor such as notepad. If the link looks suspicious or is not related to McAfee, never click on it.
2. Check the sender’s email address
Another way to keep yourself protected from McAfee antivirus scams is always to check the sender’s email address. Verify if the email is actually from McAfee or is a phishing scam.
Corporations generally have registered domain names and their emails would never have Gmail, Hotmail, or Yahoo suffixed to them. Also, if you spot a string of characters or numbers in the email address, it’s most likely a McAfee email scam.
Take the above picture for instance. The sender’s email address listed here is registered on Gmail, which would never be the case had it been an official communication from McAfee. Also, the language here gives a fair indication that this indeed is a phishing scam.
So, if you look out for these minute aspects, protecting yourself from McAfee antivirus scams or other phishing emails wouldn’t be very hard.
3. Report as spam
If you identify an email as malicious or illegitimate, report it as spam so your email service provider blocks future attempts of any contact from the sender.
Doing so also helps in blacklisting the sender and it would protect other users from McAfee antivirus scams as well. If many users report an address as spam, it is flagged and marked as potentially malicious.
Aso, it’s much more convenient to have an uncluttered inbox with just the relevant emails displayed.
4. Use a third-party spam filter
Every email service provider has spam filters to protect users from dubious emails. But, they are not very effective. This is why it’s recommended to get a reliable third-party email spam filter. This provides an extra layer of security and gives you peace of mind.
As the name suggests, these will filter out emails that carry malware-loaded files or suspicious links and keep you protected. Several antiviruses also offer spam filters as a part of the package and you can go with these as well.
5. Unsubscribe from mailing lists
If you have a habit of subscribing to every website or providing your email address right away, it’s time you change that. Scammers look out for these sources to get your email address and will send McAfee antivirus scam emails.
In case you have subscribed to a lot of channels, start unsubscribing right away. There’s always the option to unsubscribe at the top or bottom of these emails. Minimum unnecessary communication and divulging the least information is the key to a safe Internet experience.
Does McAfee send you constant emails?
Many users complained that McAfee has been sending them emails continuously reminding them to either renew their subscription or pay the annual fee. Though McAfee would send a reminder or two in this regard, it wouldn’t bombard you with emails.
So, if you receive, say 15-20 emails every day, it’s likely a McAfee scam at work, and these emails are not being sent from official sources. Thought, an email or two from recognized and reliable addresses might represent official communication.
How can you tell the difference between a phishing email and a legitimate email?
Identifying a phishing email from the lot is not simple but with a few quick pointers in mind, you can easily spot them in time and take the necessary action.
- Check for grammatical errors: Phishing emails are likely to have errors mostly in their communication. The grammar might be off, and also, there might be spelling mistakes.
- Check the sender’s email address: The sender’s address in a phishing email doesn’t have the domain name of the corporation.
- Examine the images and graphics: The graphics in phishing emails are of inferior quality and have low resolution. For instance, the logo of the official source would be blurry or certain parts of it could be missing.
- Check how the sender addresses you: Since scammers do not have your complete details yet, phishing emails do not address with your name and instead use phrases like Dear customer.
- Examine the links: Verify the links listed in the email and if these don’t go with the subject, it’s likely a phishing email. For instance, an official communication from McAfee would have links related to the antivirus and not redirect you to other websites.
That’s it! Follow these tips and tricks when dealing with suspicious-looking emails, and you will never become a victim of the McAfee antivirus scam or other phishing scams.
Also, check the best free antivirus software to keep your device protected and secure.
If you have any other queries or want to share your experience with a phishing scam, drop a comment below.