There are a few major common subjects in a phishing attempt. The majority are either PayPal or your Bank or Credit Card, with a message saying some thing like :

  • We’re improving your current account
  • There have been unauthorised or suspicious attempts to log in to your account, please verify
  • Your account has exceeded its limit and needs to be verified
  • Your account will be suspended !
  • You have received a secure message from < your bank>
  • New Secure Message
  • We are unable to verify your account information
  • Update Personal Information
  • Urgent Account Review Notification
  • We recently noticed one or more attempts to log in to your PayPal account from a foreign IP address
  • Confirmation of Order

This one is Lloyds bank We’re improving your current account pretending to come from Lloyds Banking Group Plc <[email protected]> The original email looks like this. It will NEVER be a genuine email from PayPal or Your Bank so don’t ever fill in the html ( webpage) form that comes attached to the email. Some versions of this phish will have a link to a website that looks at first glance like the genuine bank website.

Lloyds actually do allow you to pay in and perform some transactions at a Post Office rather than going to your branch, so many users might get unwittingly caught out by this one and think they need to notify the bank

Email looks like

Good news. You received this email as a notice for the database update for this month.

This update is designed by our IT engineers to provide higher security to our customers

online accounts, prevent unauthorized account access and other types of online fraud.

On 19 November 2014 we’ll be making an improvement to your account – to help you get the most out of it.

You’ll be able to pay cheques and cash into your account at most Post Office branches – giving you another way to bank with us.

Please download the document attached to this email and update your account.

Yours sincerely,

Norman Blackwell,

Non-Executive Chairman of the Board.


Please do not reply to this e-mail as this is only a notification. Mail sent to this address cannot be answered.


If you do unwittingly open the attachment you will see a page looking like this. Do not fill anything in & just delete the attachment and the email

lloyds We are improving your current account

This one wants your personal details and bank details. Many of them are also designed to specifically steal your email, facebook and other social network log in details. Please read our How to protect yourselves page for simple, sensible advice on how to avoid being infected by this sort of socially engineered malware. All of these emails use Social engineering tricks to persuade you to open the attachments that come with the email or click the link in the email .

Whether it is a message saying “look at this picture of me I took last night” and it appears to come from a friend or is more targeted at somebody who regularly is likely to receive PDF attachments or Word .doc attachments or any other common file that you use every day. Or whether it is a straight forward attempt, like this one, to steal your personal, bank, credit card or email and social networking log in details. Be very careful when unzipping them and make sure you have “show known file extensions enabled“, And then look carefully at the unzipped file. If it says .EXE then it is a problem and should not be run or opened.