An email circulating to UAB inboxes with the subject line "Transaction declined" is a phishing attempt to infect your computer with malware.

The email looks similar to the image below:

Malware

This email is not related to the campus-wide simulated phishing campaign that UAB IT is launching this month as a tool to educate campus users about phishing attacks that attempt to steal personal or financial information. Please visit uab.edu/phishing to get up-to-date information about the latest phishing attempts and tools to help you protect your information. Campus users can also download the PhishMe Reporter tool for one-click access to report phishing attempts. Follow UAB IT on Twitter for alerts on phishing attacks.

If you receive an email with a link such as “Click Here,” do the hover test. Hover your mouse over the link and look at the lower left pane to see where the link leads. Even if the page looks familiar, verify the URL or type in a URL you know before entering your information.

Look at the URL of the website you are visiting. 

To report suspected spam to AskIT, please follow the instructions here or download the PhishMe Reporter button for one-click reporting.

Follow these additional tips to avoid being a phishing victim:

  • Do NOT click links in messages that ask you to log in. Type a trusted Web address in your browser or Google for the Web site if you don’t know the address.
  • Never type personal, sensitive information (such as passwords or account numbers) on Web sites without verifying the Web site’s authenticity and security — look for an “https” in the address bar.
  • Verify the address. Malicious web sites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the address may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (.com vs. .edu).
  • Misspellings and grammatical errors can be a dead giveaway in phishing emails and subject lines.
  • If you are unsure whether a request is legitimate, contact the company directly. Do NOT use contact information provided in the request.
  • Don’t open attachments. They may contain viruses or malware that can infect your computer.
  • Protect your password. Information security and IT officials at both the university and UAB Hospital will never ask users for passwords or any other sensitive information.
  • Report suspicious activity. If you have any questions or you receive a suspicious email that you want to report, university employees and students can call the AskIT Help Desk at 205-996-5555. Hospital employees can call the HSIS Help Desk at 205-934-8888.
A new phishing attempt claims itself to protect email users from spam email. The phishing email, which comes from "UAB Admin Help," is an attempt to steal UAB users' information.

The email looks similar to the one below:

Phishing email 101216The email directs users to this page:

Phishing screen 101216

This email is not related to the campus-wide simulated phishing campaign that UAB IT is launching this month as a tool to educate campus users about phishing attacks that attempt to steal personal or financial information. Please visit uab.edu/phishing to get up-to-date information about the latest phishing attempts and tools to help you protect your information. Campus users can also download the PhishMe Reporter tool for one-click access to report phishing attempts. Follow UAB IT on Twitter for alerts on phishing attacks.

If you receive an email with a link such as “Click Here,” do the hover test. Hover your mouse over the link and look at the lower left pane to see where the link leads. Even if the page looks familiar, verify the URL or type in a URL you know before entering your information.

Look at the URL of the website you are visiting. 

To report suspected spam to AskIT, please follow the instructions here or download the PhishMe Reporter button for one-click reporting.

Follow these additional tips to avoid being a phishing victim:

  • Do NOT click links in messages that ask you to log in. Type a trusted Web address in your browser or Google for the Web site if you don’t know the address.
  • Never type personal, sensitive information (such as passwords or account numbers) on Web sites without verifying the Web site’s authenticity and security — look for an “https” in the address bar.
  • Verify the address. Malicious web sites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the address may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (.com vs. .edu).
  • Misspellings and grammatical errors can be a dead giveaway in phishing emails and subject lines.
  • If you are unsure whether a request is legitimate, contact the company directly. Do NOT use contact information provided in the request.
  • Don’t open attachments. They may contain viruses or malware that can infect your computer.
  • Protect your password. Information security and IT officials at both the university and UAB Hospital will never ask users for passwords or any other sensitive information.
  • Report suspicious activity. If you have any questions or you receive a suspicious email that you want to report, university employees and students can call the AskIT Help Desk at 205-996-5555. Hospital employees can call the HSIS Help Desk at 205-934-8888.
A new phishing attempt circulating to UAB inboxes asks users to update their email.

The phishing email looks similar to the one below:

Phishing alert 101116

This email is not related to the campus-wide simulated phishing campaign that UAB IT is launching this month as a tool to educate campus users about phishing attacks that attempt to steal personal or financial information. Please visit uab.edu/phishing to get up-to-date information about the latest phishing attempts and tools to help you protect your information. Campus users can also download the PhishMe Reporter tool for one-click access to report phishing attempts. Follow UAB IT on Twitter for alerts on phishing attacks.

If you receive an email with a link such as “Click Here,” do the hover test. Hover your mouse over the link and look at the lower left pane to see where the link leads. Even if the page looks familiar, verify the URL or type in a URL you know before entering your information.

Look at the URL of the website you are visiting. 

To report suspected spam to AskIT, please follow the instructions here or download the PhishMe Reporter button for one-click reporting.

Follow these additional tips to avoid being a phishing victim:

  • Do NOT click links in messages that ask you to log in. Type a trusted Web address in your browser or Google for the Web site if you don’t know the address.
  • Never type personal, sensitive information (such as passwords or account numbers) on Web sites without verifying the Web site’s authenticity and security — look for an “https” in the address bar.
  • Verify the address. Malicious web sites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the address may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (.com vs. .edu).
  • Misspellings and grammatical errors can be a dead giveaway in phishing emails and subject lines.
  • If you are unsure whether a request is legitimate, contact the company directly. Do NOT use contact information provided in the request.
  • Don’t open attachments. They may contain viruses or malware that can infect your computer.
  • Protect your password. Information security and IT officials at both the university and UAB Hospital will never ask users for passwords or any other sensitive information.
  • Report suspicious activity. If you have any questions or you receive a suspicious email that you want to report, university employees and students can call the AskIT Help Desk at 205-996-5555. Hospital employees can call the HSIS Help Desk at 205-934-8888.
A new phishing scam sends UAB users fake emails from a "Dropbox team" with a link to download a shared document. But when users click the link, they are taken to a fake Dropbox download site.

In the image below, you can see the fake URL for the Dropbox site.

phishing 2 100916
The email, which looks like the one pictured below, is one of several that have circulated since Friday, Oct. 7. 

Phishing 1 100916

These emails are not related to the campus-wide simulated phishing campaign that UAB IT is launching this month as a tool to educate campus users about phishing attacks that attempt to steal personal or financial information. Please visit uab.edu/phishing to get up-to-date information about the latest phishing attempts and tools to help you protect your information. Campus users can also download the PhishMe Reporter tool for one-click access to report phishing attempts. Follow UAB IT on Twitter for alerts on phishing attacks.

If you receive an email with a link such as “Click Here,” do the hover test. Hover your mouse over the link and look at the lower left pane to see where the link leads. Even if the page looks familiar, verify the URL or type in a URL you know before entering your information.

Look at the URL of the website you are visiting. 

To report suspected spam to AskIT, please follow the instructions here or download the PhishMe Reporter button for one-click reporting.

Follow these additional tips to avoid being a phishing victim:

  • Do NOT click links in messages that ask you to log in. Type a trusted Web address in your browser or Google for the Web site if you don’t know the address.
  • Never type personal, sensitive information (such as passwords or account numbers) on Web sites without verifying the Web site’s authenticity and security — look for an “https” in the address bar.
  • Verify the address. Malicious web sites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the address may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (.com vs. .edu).
  • Misspellings and grammatical errors can be a dead giveaway in phishing emails and subject lines.
  • If you are unsure whether a request is legitimate, contact the company directly. Do NOT use contact information provided in the request.
  • Don’t open attachments. They may contain viruses or malware that can infect your computer.
  • Protect your password. Information security and IT officials at both the university and UAB Hospital will never ask users for passwords or any other sensitive information.
  • Report suspicious activity. If you have any questions or you receive a suspicious email that you want to report, university employees and students can call the AskIT Help Desk at 205-996-5555. Hospital employees can call the HSIS Help Desk at 205-934-8888.
A number of phishing scams have targeted UAB email inboxes in recent weeks, and scammers are faking UAB login pages such as the web email login page, UAB Security Challenge and Central Authentication System.

Two emails pretend to be notices about payroll and appear similar to the emails below: 

phishing payroll 3 100816

These emails are not related to the campus-wide simulated phishing campaign that UAB IT is launching this month as a tool to educate campus users about phishing attacks that attempt to steal personal or financial information. Please visit uab.edu/phishing to get up-to-date information about the latest phishing attempts and tools to help you protect your information. Campus users can also download the PhishMe Reporter tool for one-click access to report phishing attempts. Follow UAB IT on Twitter for alerts on phishing attacks.

If you receive an email with a link such as “Click Here,” do the hover test. Hover your mouse over the link and look at the lower left pane to see where the link leads. Even if the page looks familiar, verify the URL or type in a URL you know before entering your information.

Look at the URL of the website you are visiting. 

To report suspected spam to AskIT, please follow the instructions here or download the PhishMe Reporter button for one-click reporting.

Follow these additional tips to avoid being a phishing victim:

  • Do NOT click links in messages that ask you to log in. Type a trusted Web address in your browser or Google for the Web site if you don’t know the address.
  • Never type personal, sensitive information (such as passwords or account numbers) on Web sites without verifying the Web site’s authenticity and security — look for an “https” in the address bar.
  • Verify the address. Malicious web sites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the address may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (.com vs. .edu).
  • Misspellings and grammatical errors can be a dead giveaway in phishing emails and subject lines.
  • If you are unsure whether a request is legitimate, contact the company directly. Do NOT use contact information provided in the request.
  • Don’t open attachments. They may contain viruses or malware that can infect your computer.
  • Protect your password. Information security and IT officials at both the university and UAB Hospital will never ask users for passwords or any other sensitive information.
  • Report suspicious activity. If you have any questions or you receive a suspicious email that you want to report, university employees and students can call the AskIT Help Desk at 205-996-5555. Hospital employees can call the HSIS Help Desk at 205-934-8888.
A new phishing attempt that directs users to a fake Blackboard Learn login page is circulating in campus inboxes.

The phishing email looks similar to the one below:

phishing 100816


The phishing page users are directed to looks like this:

phishing2100816

This email is not related to the campus-wide simulated phishing campaign that UAB IT is launching this month as a tool to educate campus users about phishing attacks that attempt to steal personal or financial information. Please visit uab.edu/phishing to get up-to-date information about the latest phishing attempts and tools to help you protect your information. Campus users can also download the PhishMe Reporter tool for one-click access to report phishing attempts. Follow UAB IT on Twitter for alerts on phishing attacks.

If you receive an email with a link such as “Click Here,” do the hover test. Hover your mouse over the link and look at the lower left pane to see where the link leads.

Look at the URL of the website you are visiting. 

To report suspected spam to AskIT, please follow the instructions here or download the PhishMe Reporter button for one-click reporting.

Follow these additional tips to avoid being a phishing victim:

  • Do NOT click links in messages that ask you to log in. Type a trusted Web address in your browser or Google for the Web site if you don’t know the address.
  • Never type personal, sensitive information (such as passwords or account numbers) on Web sites without verifying the Web site’s authenticity and security — look for an “https” in the address bar.
  • Verify the address. Malicious web sites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the address may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (.com vs. .edu).
  • Misspellings and grammatical errors can be a dead giveaway in phishing emails and subject lines.
  • If you are unsure whether a request is legitimate, contact the company directly. Do NOT use contact information provided in the request.
  • Don’t open attachments. They may contain viruses or malware that can infect your computer.
  • Protect your password. Information security and IT officials at both the university and UAB Hospital will never ask users for passwords or any other sensitive information.
  • Report suspicious activity. If you have any questions or you receive a suspicious email that you want to report, university employees and students can call the AskIT Help Desk at 205-996-5555. Hospital employees can call the HSIS Help Desk at 205-934-8888.
PhishMe LogoPhishing emails put UAB IT students, faculty and staff at risk, so UAB IT is launching a new program that simulates such attacks to help educate the campus community about how to recognize suspicious messages.

“If a phishing email lands in one of our inboxes, we’re just a few clicks away from compromising UAB’s security,” said Dr. Curt Carver, vice president for information security. “This means UAB students, faculty and staff are an integral part of our information security posture.”

Beginning Oct. 5, UAB IT will be working with PhishMe Inc. to send fake phishing emails to students, faculty and staff. These emails will imitate phishing attacks and are designed to give users a realistic experience in a safe and controlled environment.

UAB IT will not be receiving or storing any passwords as part of this simulation.

There is no penalty for falling for one of the simulations, and users will not be singled out. However, users who have fallen victim to the phishing email will be asked to take 30-60 seconds to review the education material that is presented afterward.

“As the program progresses, users should be able to better spot phishing attacks, both at home and in the workplace,” said Brian Rivers, chief information security officer.

Users are encouraged to report suspicious emails to AskIT. To make that process easier, UAB IT is making available PhishMe Reporter, an add-on software plugin for Mac and Windows users who use Microsoft Outlook for email. Learn how to download PhishMe Reporter here.

You can also report spam or suspected phishing emails to AskIT via email. Learn how here.

For more information about phishing, visit uab.edu/phishing. UAB IT will also be updating that site with alerts about new phishing attacks. You can also follow UAB IT on Twitter for up-to-date phishing alerts.
Cyber security is our shared responsibility — particularly at UAB, as we work to protect our personal information and university data.

NCSAM LogoOctober is National Cyber Security Awareness Month, and UAB IT has a number of activities planned to boost awareness of what students, faculty and staff can do to protect themselves and our institution.

Did you know that 93 percent of Americans believe their online actions can help make the web safer for everyone — but 28 percent of Americans say they lack knowledge about ways to stay safer online. 

It is important for each of us to be aware of the increasing security risks of mobile devices, from laptops and tablets to smartphones and wearable technology, and 24/7 access to our personal data.
  • Protect Your Device: Add a passcode to your cell phone, tablet, or laptop right now!
  • Use Strong Passwords or Passphrases: Especially for online banking and other important accounts.
  • Check Your Social Media Settings: Review your social media security and privacy settings frequently. Enable two-step verification whenever possible.
  • Educate Yourself: Stay informed about the latest technology trends and security issues such as malware and phishing.
  • Get Trained: Contact your institution’s IT, information security, or privacy office for additional resources or training opportunities.

Among the activities planned this month:
  • Laptop Checkup for students: A free two-day security fair at which students can get help with malware removal and antivirus software; security checks and consultations and general troubleshooting on their personal laptops. UAB IT technicians will be at the Hill Student Center from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 4-5 to assist students on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • New phishing web site: UAB IT has launched a new phishing web site — uab.edu/phishing — that details tips to avoid being caught by a phish, and links to tools, such as Keeper password manager, that can help protect you. The site also has a feed of the latest stories about phishing attempts on campus.
  • PhishMe campaign: This campus-wide campaign will send simulated phishing emails to students, faculty and staff to help educate the UAB community about the dangers of phishing attacks. Students, faculty and staff can also download the PhishMe Reporter plugin for Microsoft Outlook to give them one-click access to report phishing emails.
  • Cyber security awareness: UAB IT will be distributing posters and other information with cyber security tips that can help protect your information and your devices.
  • Security training: Campus IT professionals will be invited to a cyber security training session.
Some UAB email users have been hit by two malicious attacks — a phishing scam and a ransomware attempt. UAB IT advises faculty, staff and students to be wary of suspicious emails. Do not click links or open attachments in emails you receive unexpectedly.

The phishing email claims a user's account was logged into from an unknown location. It looks similar to the email below:

Phishing 092816
The ransomware attempt includes an attached "proposal" that, when clicked, can cause a ransomware attack, which is designed to install software that can block access to a computer system until money is paid to the scammers. The current ransomware attempt looks similar to the email below:
Ransomware 092816
If you get ransomware
  • If a computer or device that is owned or managed by the university or is used to access or maintain sensitive UAB data, take action immediately.
  • Report it to UAB Information Security by calling 205-975-0842 or by emailing datasecurity@uab.edu
  • Don't pay the ransom. There are no guarantees when you are dealing with criminals.

What Is Ransomware?
  • Ransomware is malicious software that infects and encrypts your computer and its files, as well as other devices. 
  • Victims are asked to pay a ransom to get their folders, files, and devices unlocked.
  • Criminals use ransomware to extort money from individuals and organizations. A number of large health care providers and universities have been targets.

How Ransomware Typically Gets on Devices
  • You open an email attachment that downloads the malicious software, which then infects your device.
  • You open a shared document link in an email message, and the document contains ransomware.
  • You click a link in an email message that takes you to a malicious website where you are deceived into clicking on a link and downloading malicious software.
  • Once a computer or other device is infected, the malware begins encrypting files and folders on the device, local drives, any attached drives, backup drives, and potentially other computers on the same network.
Avoid phishing emails
If you receive an email with a hidden link such as “Click Here,” do the hover test. Hover your mouse over the link and look at the lower left pane to see where the link leads. 
Look at the URL of the website you are visiting. 

To report suspected spam to AskIT, please follow the instructions here.

Follow these additional tips to avoid being a phishing victim:

  • Do NOT click links in messages that ask you to log in. Type a trusted Web address in your browser or Google for the Web site if you don’t know the address.
  • Never type personal, sensitive information (such as passwords or account numbers) on Web sites without verifying the Web site’s authenticity and security — look for an “https” in the address bar.
  • Verify the address. Malicious web sites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the address may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (.com vs. .edu).
  • Misspellings and grammatical errors can be a dead giveaway in phishing emails and subject lines.
  • If you are unsure whether a request is legitimate, contact the company directly. Do NOT use contact information provided in the request.
  • Don’t open attachments. They may contain viruses or malware that can infect your computer.
  • Protect your password. Information security and IT officials at both the university and UAB Hospital will never ask users for passwords or any other sensitive information.
  • Report suspicious activity. If you have any questions or you receive a suspicious email that you want to report, university employees and students can call the AskIT Help Desk at 205-996-5555. Hospital employees can call the HSIS Help Desk at 205-934-8888.
Some members of the UAB campus community have reported phishing phone calls from scammers who indicate there are IT problems.

One call indicated the user's IP address had been compromised. This is a common phone scam designed to try to get users to give personal information or to give access to their computer to the malicious callers. 

If you receive a suspicious call, please contact your departmental IT representative or AskIT at 205-996-5555. On-campus IT representatives can help determine if there is truly a problem with your computer.