Internet Marketing March 28th, 2008
A Warning to Clients and Advertisers About Google AdWords Phising Scam
Yesterday afternoon, a client notified TechWyse that they received an email that appeared to be from Google, asking them to resubmit their payment information for their Google AdWords account. The problem is, they received the email in an email account used by their receptionist, and have never used an internal email address to sign up for AdWords, as TechWyse has always administered their Google advertising programs.
Dear Google AdWords Customer,
Please sign in to your account at http://adwords.google.com/select/login , and update your billing information.Your account will be reactivated as soon as you update your payment information. Your ads will show immediately if you decide to pay for clicks via credit or debit card. If you decide to pay by direct debit, we may need to receive your signed debit authorization before your ads start running, depending on your location. If you choose bank transfer, your ads will show as soon as we receive your first payment.
We look forward to providing you with the most effective advertising available.
The Google AdWords Team
Looks innocent enough, and is pretty much a copy of the standard email from Google.
However, research on the Google AdWords account showed that there were no outstanding balances, the credit card on file was not expired, and there were no notices at the top of the account page, as is the norm with AdWords. And according to a poster on Search Engine Roundtable, the link actually redirects to http://adwrods.google.select.*****.cn. Note the Chinese top level domain, the change of slashes to dots, and the misspelled ‘adwrods’.
Do not click on this message should you receive it. And if you are a TechWyse client, are considering TechWyse for your internet marketing needs, or have been a previous TechWyse client, note that we do not click on these emails unless they are expected. We also do not click on links with warnings such as this. TechWyse always logs in to each account directly to investigate payment, credit card, and related account issues. Failure to find anything within the accounts prompts us to contact Google directly to investigate the issue.
If you should ever receive unexpected email asking for credit card, banking, or other financial information, whether it appears to be from Google or any other ‘trusted’ source, proceed with caution. Do not click unexpected emails with links, do not give away financial information through email, and contact the company directly if you have any concerns about the email.