Identity Theft Scams
The American Express "Fraud
Protection Alert" Scam
Redirects to spoofed (Fake) website: a variety of URLs, including http://nosgoth.at/aMB8dBws/index.html
You may have received an email like the one below that looks very authentic, like it came from American Express, or a phone call about the same subject. It is an attempt to get you to enter confidential information (typically a social security number, name, address, bank account information, etc., to allow the scammers to steal your identity and open credit cards in your name.
This email was not sent by American Express; American Express is a victim as well. This is referred to as spoofing (making a fake email that looks legitimate, "phishing" (when by email) or "vishing" (when by telephone). If you receive an email similar to the one below, DO NOT click on the link, and do not enter any information on the forms there.
The website that the link leads to is a spoof; a fake website, not created by American Express. It goes to a variety of URLs, including http://nosgoth.at/aMB8dBws/index.html, not AmericanExpress.com! When you enter the information they ask for, you will simply be handing the thieves the keys to your bank accounts. That is how spoofing, phishing and vishing works.
Remember, no reputable business would send you an email or a phone call requesting your personal account information. Any such email you receive asking for this information should be considered phony and brought to the attention of the business being 'phished'.
Anytime you need to go to a website for your bank, credit card companies or other personal, financial or confidential information; do not follow a link in an email; just type their address in your browser directly (such as www.AmericanExpress.com )
Below are actual phishing emails that started circulating in early 2012. We have disabled the links to the phisher's website, which is a variety of URLs, including http://nosgoth.at/aMB8dBws/index.html
It is possible that the owners of the website ( http://nosgoth.at/aMB8dBws/index.html) are not involved, and that their server has been hacked, but the fact remains that this is the address the scam goes to. See this page for another variation of the scam
----- Forwarded message -----
From: "American Express" <AmericanExpress@welcome.aexp.com>
Date: Mon, Apr 23, 2012 11:45 am
Subject: Fraud Protection Alert
To: <your email address>
Fraud Protection Alert.
For your security, we regularly monitor accounts for possible fraudulent activity. Please review the attempted charge below which occurred within minutes of the timestamp of this message.
Transaction Date: 04/23/12
Case Number: 57685
Please verify these attempted charges using our Secure Online Chat or please log in to www.americanexpress.com/case/ to dispute it. If we've already spoken to you about this matter, please disregard this message. No further action is required.
Thank you for your Cardmembership.
American Express Account Security
Fraud Prevention Network
For your security:
Contact Customer Service | View Our Privacy Statement | Add Us to Your Address Book
Your Cardmember information is included in the upper-right corner to help you recognize this as a customer service e-mail from American Express. To learn more about e-mail security or report a suspicious e-mail, please visit us at americanexpress.com/phishing. We kindly ask you not to reply to this e-mail but instead contact us securely via the customer service link above.
Copyright 2012 American Express Company. All rights reserved.
What is Phishing?
Phishing is an attempt by an individual or group to solicit personal
information from unsuspecting users by employing social engineering techniques.
Phishing emails are crafted to appear as if they have been sent from a
legitimate organization or known individual. These emails often attempt to
entice users to click on a link that will take the user to a fraudulent website
that appears legitimate. The user then may be asked to provide personal
information such as account usernames and passwords that can further expose them
to future compromises. Additionally, these fraudulent websites may contain
Learn More About Phishing
The following documents and websites can help you learn more about phishing and how to protect yourself against phishing attacks.
- Avoiding Social Engineering and Phishing Attacks
- Protecting Your Privacy
- Understanding Web Site Certificates
- Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG)
- Federal Trade Commission, Identity Theft
- Recognizing and Avoiding Email Scams
Methods of Reporting Phishing Email to US-CERT
For more information about phishing, see