Email Marketing

Spam Emails Can Be Convincing

I subscribe to a lot of email marketing lists, which means I receive a higher than average amount of spam. I am rather cautious and if I doubt the authenticity, I open the emails on an old laptop running Linux, which I regularly reinstall. You never know.

Most of the spam and phishing emails are diverted by my ISP’s spam filter although some rather obvious ones still get through. Why are our marketing emails sometimes blocked? We’re legit. I feel another blog coming on.

I’ve just received an email which is rather impressive. It purports to be from a well-established, at least four years, data broker, and I was cautious as I had read something about them on a forum. The email started by suggesting that as I was on their database they were informing me of the fact as required under the GDPR regulations. This was the first time I’d had any contact with them.

Spam Emails Can Be ConvincingIt stated it held information on me and what it was going to use the information for. It then listed the data it held:

•    Full name;
•    Employer, company and company details;
•    Office location (Country & City);
•    Business telephone number;
•    Business email address; and
•    Job title.

The tone was business-like, although there was neither personalisation nor warmth, so not what you’d expect from a company whose email marketing list you’d subscribed to. The statement that my ‘data is stored in the UK or EEA’ was followed by a however, to the effect that personal data could be transferred outside those areas depending, more or less, on their whim.

I went onto a ‘is this email spam’ website and the consensus was it was phishing.

The email was well written (possibly pinched from another site) and only the threat to distribute the details let it down. Any email marketing company depends on staff not clicking through. If your staff are under-trained, it might not have raised their concern. It’s down to you to ensure they are up to speed with developments in spam and phishing emails, and they feel safe in raising concerns with management.

According to the ICO, the blame stops with you.

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