I just received an email from "American Airlines" (email@example.com), titled "Your Order#7672627" It has a zip file attached, and the email encourages me to open it.
No, I did not order any plane tickets, and No, I'm not clicking on that file, thanks very much.
A quick search on Google revealed that this is a common scam--the destination and flight number are different, but the overall gist of the email is the same. The file contains a phishing virus that will trash my computer if I open it.
Not going to fall for it, and I hope no one else does, either, which is why I'm posting the info here.
It's been said before, but it bears repeating: Don't click on ANY files unless you are certain about the sender. If you're unsure, take a few extra moments to do a quick internet search using portions of the email and the word "scam". The Snopes website (www.Snopes.com) is also a great resource for these types of things. Here's their page confirming this email as a scam: http://www.snopes.com/fraud/phishing/aa.asp
The same goes for those email forwards from well-meaning friends and family (you know who you are--STOP sending me that stuff!) who insist on disseminating spam filled with dire warnings meant to breed panic (such as the "hypodermic needle hidden under the movie theater seat" or the "man hiding in the back seat of your car at the gas station"). They're usually completely false, and even when there's a grain of truth to it, the email has distorted the information to make it utterly useless. Again, before you hit "forward"--don't! And if you still feel you must "just in case", then at least take a second to head over to Snopes and see if there's any truth to it.
Here's the text of the scammer email I received:
FLIGHT NUMBER AB581
DATE & TIME / JANUARY 28, 2012, 10:33 AM
ARRIVING / Fresno
TOTAL PRICE / 214.23 USD
Please find your ticket attached.
To use your ticket you should print it.