In this hi-tech age “phishing schemes” are a common occurrence.
According to Investopedia, “Phishing is a method of identity theft that relies on individuals unwittingly volunteering personal details or information that can then be used for nefarious purposes. It is often carried out through the creation of a fraudulent website, email, or text appearing to represent a legitimate firm.”
Your state missions staff recently discovered Louisiana Baptist churches and church leadership are receiving phishing emails using John Hebert’s name (our Missions and Ministries Team Director) and possibly even his picture. The emails request you respond via email relating to a private matter. Please note that John Hebert has not emailed anyone with such a request.
The email address is a Gmail.com address and not his actual work email, John.Hebert@LouisianaBaptists.org. Some of the spoofed emails use his email but end with a Gmail extension such as John.Hebert.LouisianaBaptists.firstname.lastname@example.org).
Please do not respond to these emails or emails from other Louisiana Baptists staff members requesting you to communicate only via email. Delete them immediately and notify Shana.Johnson@LouisianaBaptists.org of the phishing attempt.
Here are some good practices to help you recognize and avoid such phishing excursions:
- Emails demanding urgent actions (i.e. please respond immediately, can you do this today?)
- Emails with bad grammar or spelling mistakes.
- Emails with unfamiliar greetings or salutation. Or if the body of the request does not “sound” like the person you know.
- Inconsistencies in the email address, links, domain names. Always look at the full email address and not just the name that appears (see above example).
- Avoid emails you are unsure about.
- Do not click on links of unexpected emails – verify first.
- If you feel you must respond, instead of replying, start a new email and type in the known/actual email address of the sender.
We’ve also learned of phishing text attempts, so please be on guard against any of these. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact:
Information Service Support Supervisor
318.448.3402 (Ext. 210)
Let’s be discerning and avoid “phishing schemes” such as the ones outlined above. Instead, let’s focus our efforts on fishing for men (Luke 5:10).