Beware: New Funeral Service E-notice Email Scam

January 27, 2014
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Funeral homes – and the rest of us – need to be on alert for a nasty new email scam.

This scam appears to swipe the names and logos of funeral homes in hopes of getting recipients to click on a malware-infected link.

The email purports to be an e-invite to a funeral or remembrance service for an unnamed friend or acquaintance.

The email may have the subject line “funeral notification” or “passing of your friend.”

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Several versions are circulating, but a typical one reads:

“You are cordially invited to express your sympathy in memory of your friend at a celebration of life service….”

There’s a link to get more info about the deceased and the service. That link apparently is infected with malware. Do not click it.

The emails include an upcoming date for the service, so recipients may feel they have little time to get the information they need. Most scammers create a sense of urgency exactly so people will click first and question later.

At least two funeral homes – one in Texas, one in Kansas – have issued warnings that their names are being used on the fraudulent emails. These types of e-scams morph fast, so I would expect more versions using other funeral home names to pop up.

If you get an e-invite to a service, ignore it if it doesn’t include the name of the deceased.

If you get one and you worry you might miss a real memorial — the scammers hope you’ll fret enough to click the link — you can put your mind at rest by checking the funeral home’s website (do not use the links on the email) or scanning the local death notices.

Source: http://www.cleveland.com/consumeraffairs/index.ssf/2014/01/funeral_e-notice_may_contain_m.html#incart_river

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