1. Definitely helpful. One aspect I’ve tried to use for checking these sorts of e-mails is to look at the e-mail headers (too often hidden in mail clients). Those are really helpful to see if an e-mail actually originated with the organization it claims to be from.

  2. One way to check to see if links in an email are legitimate or not is to hover your mouse over the link, and look in the bottom bar of the web browser. The full URL is displayed there. If it’s legitimate, it should look like it’s going to the company’s website (that allegedly sent the email).

    This does break down if that company is using link-tracking services, or an email newsletter that has links that redirect via the newsletter service before going to the actual website, so it’s not foolproof.

    I have managed to avoid many scams this way.

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