What kind of email is "Microsoft Security Team - Password Expiration"?
Our inspection of the "Microsoft Security Team - Password Expiration" email revealed that it is spam. This letter urges the recipient to update their email account, as its password is due to expire today. This phishing mail aims to obtain the log-in credentials of victims' emails.
"Microsoft Security Team - Password Expiration" email scam overview
The scam email with the subject "De-activation of Email account - Microsoft Community" (may vary) is presented as a notification from the "Microsoft Security Team". The letter informs the recipient that their email account password will expire today. The recipient must update their account by clicking the button presented in this spam email.
It must be emphasized that these claims are false, and this mail is not associated with the Microsoft Corporation or its products and services.
After we pressed the "Keep Current Password" button, it resulted in a redirect to a phishing site. It mimics the recipient's email account sign-in page, yet despite its relatively legitimate appearance – this website is fake. Phishing webpages record entered information and send it to scammers.
The danger exceeds the loss of an email account. Emails are commonly used to register other content – hence, cyber criminals may be able to gain access to the accounts and platforms linked to the hijacked mail.
To expand upon the potential misuse, scammers can steal the identities of social account owners (e.g., emails, social networking, social media, messengers, chats, etc.) and ask the contacts/friends for loans or donations, promote scams, and proliferate malware by sharing malicious files/links.
Stolen finance-related accounts (e.g., online baking, money transferring, e-commerce, digital wallets, etc.) can be used to make fraudulent transactions and/or online purchases.
To summarize, by trusting an email like "Microsoft Security Team - Password Expiration" – users can experience severe privacy issues, financial losses, and even identity theft.
If you have disclosed your log-in credentials – immediately change the passwords of all possibly exposed accounts and contact their official support.
|"Microsoft Security Team - Password Expiration" phishing email
|Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
|Recipient's email password will expire soon, and the account requires to be updated.
|Detection Names (joyeriamurguia[.]com)
|Avira (Phishing), CyRadar (Malicious), Emsisoft (Phishing), Fortinet (Phishing), Kaspersky (Phishing), Netcraft (Malicious), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
|Serving IP Address (joyeriamurguia[.]com)
|Unauthorized online purchases, changed online account passwords, identity theft, illegal access of the computer.
|Deceptive emails, rogue online pop-up ads, search engine poisoning techniques, misspelled domains.
|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 Combo Cleaner.
Phishing spam campaign examples
We have researched countless spam emails; "Quarantine Area", "FedEx - Delivery Of The Suspended Package", "DHL Shipping Invoice", "Your Encrypted Voice Message", and "Maersk Line email scam" are merely some examples of letters used for phishing.
Various scams are promoted through spam mail, and it is even utilized in malware proliferation. While these emails are infamous for being riddled with grammatical and spelling errors, they may be elaborately disguised as messages from genuine companies, service providers, organizations, authorities, and other entities.
Due to how widespread spam mail is and how well-crafted it can be – we strongly recommend treating incoming emails, PMs/DMs, SMSes, and other messages with care.
How do spam campaigns infect computers?
Some formats might need additional interaction to begin malware download/installation processes. For example, Microsoft Office files require users to enable macro commands (i.e., editing/content), while OneNote documents need them to click on embedded files or links.
How to avoid installation of malware?
We strongly advise exercising caution with incoming emails and other messages. Attachments or links present in dubious/irrelevant mail must not be opened, as they can be virulent. We recommend using post-2010 Microsoft Office versions since their "Protected View" mode prevents automatic macro execution.
However, malware is not spread exclusively via spam mail. We also advise being vigilant when browsing since fraudulent and malicious online content typically appears legitimate and harmless.
Additionally, all downloads must be performed from official and verified channels. Another recommendation is to activate and update programs using genuine functions/tools, as those acquired from third-parties may contain malware.
We must emphasize that having a reputable anti-virus installed and kept up-to-date is paramount to device integrity and user safety. Security software must be used to run regular system scans and to remove detected threats and issues. If you've already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.
Text presented in the "Microsoft Security Team - Password Expiration" spam email letter:
Subject: De-activation of Email account - Microsoft Community"
Dear ******* ,
Your password for "*******" will expire Today. You are required to update your account by clicking below
Keep Current Password
Note: Microsoft Security Support team will not be held responsible, if no action is taken today.
Microsoft Security Team.
Microsoft respect your privacy
Microsoft Corporation: Address:
One Microsoft Way : Redmond:
Washington: 98052-6399: USA
Screenshot of the phishing website promoted by this spam campaign:
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced IT skills. Combo Cleaner is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is "Microsoft Security Team - Password Expiration" phishing email?
- Types of malicious emails.
- How to spot a malicious email?
- What to do if you fell for an email scam?
Types of malicious emails:
Most commonly, cybercriminals use deceptive emails to trick Internet users into giving away their sensitive private information, for example, login information for various online services, email accounts, or online banking information.
Such attacks are called phishing. In a phishing attack, cybercriminals usually send an email message with some popular service logo (for example, Microsoft, DHL, Amazon, Netflix), create urgency (wrong shipping address, expired password, etc.), and place a link which they hope their potential victims will click on.
After clicking the link presented in such email message, victims are redirected to a fake website that looks identical or extremely similar to the original one. Victims are then asked to enter their password, credit card details, or some other information that gets stolen by cybercriminals.
Emails with Malicious Attachments
Another popular attack vector is email spam with malicious attachments that infect users' computers with malware. Malicious attachments usually carry trojans that are capable of stealing passwords, banking information, and other sensitive information.
In such attacks, cybercriminals' main goal is to trick their potential victims into opening an infected email attachment. To achieve this goal, email messages usually talk about recently received invoices, faxes, or voice messages.
If a potential victim falls for the lure and opens the attachment, their computers get infected, and cybercriminals can collect a lot of sensitive information.
While it's a more complicated method to steal personal information (spam filters and antivirus programs usually detect such attempts), if successful, cybercriminals can get a much wider array of data and can collect information for a long period of time.
This is a type of phishing. In this case, users receive an email claiming that a cybercriminal could access the webcam of the potential victim and has a video recording of one's masturbation.
To get rid of the video, victims are asked to pay a ransom (usually using Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency). Nevertheless, all of these claims are false - users who receive such emails should ignore and delete them.
How to spot a malicious email?
While cyber criminals try to make their lure emails look trustworthy, here are some things that you should look for when trying to spot a phishing email:
- Check the sender's ("from") email address: Hover your mouse over the "from" address and check if it's legitimate. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft, be sure to check if the email address is @microsoft.com and not something suspicious like @m1crosoft.com, @microsfot.com, @account-security-noreply.com, etc.
- Check for generic greetings: If the greeting in the email is "Dear user", "Dear @youremail.com", "Dear valued customer", this should raise suspiciousness. Most commonly, companies call you by your name. Lack of this information could signal a phishing attempt.
- Check the links in the email: Hover your mouse over the link presented in the email, if the link that appears seems suspicious, don't click it. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft and the link in the email shows that it will go to firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0... you shouldn't trust it. It's best not to click any links in the emails but to visit the company website that sent you the email in the first place.
- Don't blindly trust email attachments: Most commonly, legitimate companies will ask you to log in to their website and to view any documents there; if you received an email with an attachment, it's a good idea to scan it with an antivirus application. Infected email attachments are a common attack vector used by cybercriminals.
To minimise the risk of opening phishing and malicious emails we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.
Example of a spam email:
What to do if you fell for an email scam?
- If you clicked on a link in a phishing email and entered your password - be sure to change your password as soon as possible. Usually, cybercriminals collect stolen credentials and then sell them to other groups that use them for malicious purposes. If you change your password in a timely manner, there's a chance that criminals won't have enough time to do any damage.
- If you entered your credit card information - contact your bank as soon as possible and explain the situation. There's a good chance that you will need to cancel your compromised credit card and get a new one.
- If you see any signs of identity theft - you should immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission. This institution will collect information about your situation and create a personal recovery plan.
- If you opened a malicious attachment - your computer is probably infected, you should scan it with a reputable antivirus application. For this purpose, we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.
- Help other Internet users - report phishing emails to Anti-Phishing Working Group, FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, National Fraud Information Center and U.S. Department of Justice.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Why did I receive this email?
Spam emails are not personal. Cyber criminals distribute these messages by the thousand with the hopes that at least some recipients will fall for their scams.
I have provided my personal information when tricked by this spam email, what should I do?
If you have provided your account credentials – change the passwords of all potentially compromised accounts and inform their official support. And if you've disclosed other private data (e.g., ID card details, passport scans/photos, credit card numbers, etc.) – immediately contact relevant authorities.
I have read a spam email but didn't open the attachment, is my computer infected?
No, merely reading an email is harmless. Systems are infected when malicious attachments or links are opened/clicked.
I have downloaded and opened a file attached to a spam email, is my computer infected?
Whether your device was infected might depend on the opened file's format. If it was an executable (.exe, .run, etc.) – most likely, yes – since these formats cause infections almost without fail.
You might have avoided infecting the system if it was a document (.doc, .xls, .pdf, .one, etc.), as it may require additional actions to start downloading/installing malware (e.g., enabling macros, clicking embedded content, etc.).
Will Combo Cleaner remove malware infections present in email attachments?
Yes, Combo Cleaner is designed to scan computers and remove threats. It is capable of detecting and eliminating most of the known malware infections. It must be stressed that since high-end malicious software usually hides deep within systems – running a full system scan is essential.