An email that isn’t from PayPal

By | August 15, 2011
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In the Computers newsletter this month:
  • An email that isn’t from PayPal
  • An alternative to “bunk desks”, one on top of each other…
  • Tip from Georgia: CDs and DVDs

It’s a fairly quick newsletter this time as I’ve got my niece staying for a few days and I’m meant to be giving her a holiday here in the Lakes now she’s finished her A-levels, rather than leaving her to mind Alastair while I write this!

An email that looks like it’s from PayPal – but isn’t
I recently had an email to my work email address that looked like it was from PayPal. We do use PayPal here, and it looked quite persuasive… but it wasn’t really from PayPal at all – it was from a bunch of crooks trying to con me. And you could get a similar email saying it’s from PayPal or from your bank or credit card company.

The email said that a new email address had been added to my PayPal account – which was designed to make me panic, thinking someone had hacked in and added themselves, so they’d be able to pay themselves from my PayPal account.

Then the email went on to say that if I “did not authorise this change”, I should fill in the attached form and they would sort it out.

The problem is, the attached form would have given them my log in details… and then they would have been able to get into my PayPal account.

But as things stood, it was nonsense – no email had been added to my account at all. That was just to get me to fill in the attached form.

If you get anything like this, be suspicious if it asks you to fill in an attached form. That isn’t how most businesses work – instead they’d tell you to go to their website and log in there.

If you’re still not sure, just ignore the form and go to (or your bank and so on). Log in as normal and look for the “Account”, “Profile”, “Settings” or “Options” button – in there you should be able to see all email addresses (sometimes called “users”) set up to be able to log in. If the one mentioned in the email isn’t there, delete the email and don’t worry about it – you’ve successfully avoided the scam!

And of course if you don’t have a PayPal account and you get an email saying a new “user” has been added to your PayPal account, it can’t be true – must be a scam!

Family History book and making space in the warehouse
Last time I gave you a little tip about researching your Family History on the internet (someone else might have done it for you! – /NL010811.htm ) and in fact I’m currently working on a book (not available yet) all about how to trace your family history on the web. The information available online makes it so much easier than traipsing around the country for everything – and most people don’t realise how much is available free, without joining one of the big pay websites. (Even down to scans of 100-year old newspapers that might mention your family – I found one that said thank you to my great-grandfather, who was a photographer, for allowing the newspaper to use a photograph he’d taken.)

Anyway, this has caused a slight problem in that we need to clear a bit of space in our little warehouse to put the new book once it’s finished! (Laura and Louize didn’t like my suggestion of them having “bunk desks” as a solution…)

So until the end of August I’m doing a special “summer warehouse clearance sale” for newsletter readers only. For every book in the sale you buy, you can get another one completely free.

Not everything’s included – click here to see what is: 
I don’t think we’ll go out of stock of any of these books. The aim is just to clear a bit of space, not get rid of all of them. But you never know, so if we do run out of a particular book you’ve ordered, we’ll contact you to let you know so you can choose an alternative.

Tip from Georgia
When you put a disk into your PC, often it’ll start playing automatically. If it’s a DVD film, it’ll start playing the film, if it’s a program, it might start up the program or if it’s photos, it might open up a “slideshow” of them.

Normally that’s what you want, but if for some reason it’s not (eg instead you want to copy the disk, or find a particular photo on it), just hold down shift on the keyboard as you put the disk in and while it starts whirring. That’ll stop it automatically playing. Quick and easy!

Well, that’s all for this time. After leaving my niece to watch Alastair while I wrote this, I think I might struggle to get him back again! There seems to be a lot of fun going on…

Tim Wakeling

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