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Protecting your wallet and identity from thieves on Cyber Monday

Posted at 5:09 AM, Nov 26, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-26 06:15:15-05

LEE COUNTY, Fla. -- Millions of people will be shopping online on Cyber Monday.


If you plan to do some holiday shopping through popular websites such as Amazon, eBay or Etsy and are expecting shipments from UPS, FedEx or the U.S. Postal Service, be aware. 


The Lee County Sheriff's Office is warning people of a "phishing" scheme designed to hack your bank account and steal your identity.


They say fraudsters are sending convincing and credible looking emails to holiday shoppers.


Some examples of bogus emails a cyber-thief may use starts with subject lines aimed at grabbing your attention, such as: “Your recent order cannot be processed due to problems with your method of payment,” or “You have a package ready to be delivered, please download the attachment to confirm your delivery address.”


In the email, you will likely find instructions to click on a link or open an attachment with directions to enter your personal and financial information.


To keep from becoming a victim of this clever scheme, the Lee County Sheriff's Office recommends following these safety tips:

  1. Never click on an embedded link or attachment located in an email. Instead, enter the company’s official website address in your browser, sign in to your account and check “your orders” to determine if the email you received matches your order information. If you do not have an online account or do not know how to create one, call the number located on the website, not the number in the email.
  2. UPS, FedEx, and the U.S. Postal Service do not request payments, personal or financial information, account numbers, or passwords in an unsolicited manner through email, mail or phone. 
  3. Analyze the salutation. Is the email addressed to a vague “valued customer, ma’am or sir?” If so, watch out. Most legitimate businesses will use a personal salutation with your first and last name.
  4. Be on the lookout for unofficial “From” addresses. Fraudsters often use email addresses that are similar to, but not the same as, a company’s official email address. For instance, if you receive an official email from Amazon, it will always come from 

You can report a phishing email by forwarding to, visiting, or contacting the Sheriff’s Office Fraud Line at 258-3292.