For many students starting at university this year it will be their first experience of living independently and many will be feeling vulnerable and perhaps not always on their guard from potential scams.  Email is a lifeline for millions of students and regrettably it is being exploited by a minority waiting to pounce on vulnerable individuals.  There are many lines of defence built into a university's and hosted email infrastructures to help protect against email scams but often the last and best line of defence is a combination of education and awareness allowing people to recognise common types of email scams.

Thankfully, the team on the HoTMaiL blog have posted this entry:

http://emailsupport.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!5D6F5A79A79B6708!7926.entry

It lists in some detail the 5 most common types of email scam, which are:

  1. Verify your account now to avoid it being closed!
  2. A large sum of money is due to you if you just give us your personal information.
  3. You won something!
  4. The sudden emergency!
  5. If you don’t forward this email, something bad will happen.

Also listed is information on what to do if you receive a questionable email.  The content of the article has a slight leaning to HoTMaiL but much of it is generic to any reader.

The post has plenty of information on how to spot these.  For many people reading this blog, you might be tempted to believe that it's easy to identify these scams but for the young and vulnerable it's surprising how tempting it can be to follow the rabbit and get lured into the scam.

Why not take the content from this posting, modify it to make it more relevant to your students and place it on your student pages?  The worse thing we can do is assume this is obvious to everyone.