PASSWORD EXPIRATION NOTICE email scam removal guide
What is PASSWORD EXPIRATION NOTICE email scam?
In most cases scammers behind email phishing scams attempt to trick recipients into providing personal information such as bank account numbers, credit card details, passwords and other sensitive details that could be misused for malicious purposes. In this particular case scammers attempt to deceive recipients into entering their Office 365 login credentials on a fake Microsoft website.
Scammers behind this phishing email seek to trick recipients into believing that the password for their Microsoft Office is going to expire soon and they need to update the password as soon as possible if they want to avoid any login problems and/or loss of access to the account. The provided website link is designed to open a fake Microsoft Office account login page where visitors are asked to enter their email address, current password, new password and then confirm the new password. No information should be entered on websites like this one or any other fake, unofficial, or untrustworthy in any other way websites. By entering the asked details on this fake page users would simply provide their MS Office login credentials to some scammers/cyber criminals. They could misuse stolen accounts to access files, photos, and other personal files, data. Depending on accessed files data cyber criminals could misuse it to make fraudulent purchases, transactions, spread phishing scams like this one further, send malspam, steal identities, etc. Also, they could sell stolen MS Office accounts and/or data to third parties/other cyber criminals. It is worthwhile to mention that by trusting such emails users who use the same login credentials for multiple accounts may lose access to those accounts as well.
|Name||PASSWORD EXPIRATION NOTICE Email Scam|
|Threat Type||Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud|
|Fake Claim||Microsoft Office account password has expired/will expire soon|
|Disguise||Email from Microsoft Support|
|Symptoms||Unauthorized online purchases, changed online account passwords, stolen accounts, identity theft.|
|Distribution methods||Deceptive emails, rogue online pop-up ads, search engine poisoning techniques, misspelled domains.|
|Damage||Loss of sensitive private information, monetary loss, identity theft.|
|Malware Removal (Windows)||
To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Malwarebytes.
There are various email scams out there, some examples are "Spotify Email Scam", "POLÍCIA SEGURANÇA PÚBLICA Email Scam", "Your Email Is Out Of Date Email Scam". To summarize, scammers behind such scams attempt to trick users into providing some sensitive information that could be used for malicious purposes/to generate revenue in one or another way. Typically, users who trust such scams become victims of identity theft, suffer monetary loss, lose access to various accounts, etc. It is worthwhile to mention that emails can be used to distribute malware (e.g. ransomware, Trojans) as well. The way how it can be achieved is described in the next paragraph.
How do spam campaigns infect computers?
How to avoid installation of malware?
Links, attachments (file) in received irrelevant emails should not be opened, especially they are sent from unknown, suspicious addresses. Software, files should be downloaded only from trustworthy, official pages and through direct download links. None of the other channels like Peer-to-Peer networks, third party downloaders, unofficial pages, etc., should be used for that. Third party installers should not be used as tools to install any software as well. Installed software must to be activated and/or updated only with implemented functions (and/or tools) that are provided by its official developers. Third party, unofficial tools should never be used neither to activate or update any installed software. Also, it is not legal to use tools of this kind to activate any licensed software. Additionally, it is recommended to scan computers for threats regularly and do it with an up-to-date, reputable antivirus or anti-spyware security suite. If you've already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.
Text presented in the PASSWORD EXPIRATION NOTICE email letter:
Subject: Important- Password Expiration Notice
PASSWORD EXPIRATION NOTICE
Your password for account "********" expires today. You can retain and update your current password or change to a new one.
Update the password as soon as possible using the pcrisk secure portal below to prevent login problems and loss of access.
© 2020 - HelpDesk
Screenshot of the fake MS Office login website:
Another password expiration-themed spam email:
Text presented within:
Subject: Password Expiry
Password for **** is about to expire today. You can change your Password or continue using current Password.
Keep Current Password
you may visit **** to see email activity
Screenshot of the phishing site promoted via this spam email:
Another example of password expiration-themed spam email:
Text presented within:
Subject: Password Expiry
Hello ******** ,
password ******** expires after 24 hours (18 Feb 2021) .
You can use the link below to continue using the current password .
Keep Current Password
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Malwarebytes is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is PASSWORD EXPIRATION NOTICE email scam?
- STEP 1. Manual removal of possible malware infections.
- STEP 2. Check if your computer is clean.
How to remove malware manually?
Manual malware removal is a complicated task - usually it is best to allow antivirus or anti-malware programs to do this automatically. To remove this malware we recommend using Malwarebytes for Windows. If you wish to remove malware manually, the first step is to identify the name of the malware that you are trying to remove. Here is an example of a suspicious program running on a user's computer:
If you checked the list of programs running on your computer, for example, using task manager, and identified a program that looks suspicious, you should continue with these steps:
Download a program called Autoruns. This program shows auto-start applications, Registry, and file system locations:
Restart your computer into Safe Mode:
Windows XP and Windows 7 users: Start your computer in Safe Mode. Click Start, click Shut Down, click Restart, click OK. During your computer start process, press the F8 key on your keyboard multiple times until you see the Windows Advanced Option menu, and then select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.
Video showing how to start Windows 7 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Windows 8 users: Start Windows 8 is Safe Mode with Networking - Go to Windows 8 Start Screen, type Advanced, in the search results select Settings. Click Advanced startup options, in the opened "General PC Settings" window, select Advanced startup. Click the "Restart now" button. Your computer will now restart into the "Advanced Startup options menu". Click the "Troubleshoot" button, and then click the "Advanced options" button. In the advanced option screen, click "Startup settings". Click the "Restart" button. Your PC will restart into the Startup Settings screen. Press F5 to boot in Safe Mode with Networking.
Video showing how to start Windows 8 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Windows 10 users: Click the Windows logo and select the Power icon. In the opened menu click "Restart" while holding "Shift" button on your keyboard. In the "choose an option" window click on the "Troubleshoot", next select "Advanced options". In the advanced options menu select "Startup Settings" and click on the "Restart" button. In the following window you should click the "F5" button on your keyboard. This will restart your operating system in safe mode with networking.
Video showing how to start Windows 10 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Extract the downloaded archive and run the Autoruns.exe file.
In the Autoruns application, click "Options" at the top and uncheck "Hide Empty Locations" and "Hide Windows Entries" options. After this procedure, click the "Refresh" icon.
Check the list provided by the Autoruns application and locate the malware file that you want to eliminate.
You should write down its full path and name. Note that some malware hides process names under legitimate Windows process names. At this stage, it is very important to avoid removing system files. After you locate the suspicious program you wish to remove, right click your mouse over its name and choose "Delete".
After removing the malware through the Autoruns application (this ensures that the malware will not run automatically on the next system startup), you should search for the malware name on your computer. Be sure to enable hidden files and folders before proceeding. If you find the filename of the malware, be sure to remove it.
Reboot your computer in normal mode. Following these steps should remove any malware from your computer. Note that manual threat removal requires advanced computer skills. If you do not have these skills, leave malware removal to antivirus and anti-malware programs. These steps might not work with advanced malware infections. As always it is best to prevent infection than try to remove malware later. To keep your computer safe, install the latest operating system updates and use antivirus software.
To be sure your computer is free of malware infections, we recommend scanning it with Malwarebytes for Windows.