Received a suspicious e-mail? Here's what to do
April 03, 2013
In recent years, many companies have been targeted by sophisticated Internet con artists determined to steal consumers' private information—and their money—through the use of convincing e-mail scams.
Typically, these e-mails claim to be from banks, investment providers, credit card issuers, mortgage lenders, or insurance companies. And while they generally don't address you by name, they may look perfectly legitimate at first glance.
If you receive an unsolicited e-mail claiming to be from Vanguard that requests personal information, please forward it to email@example.com immediately.
Messages like this often warn of a "security issue" that needs your immediate attention, and instruct you to click a link in order to verify your identity and correct the problem. The link points to a phony—but realistic—website that asks you to enter your name, Social Security number, account number, password, or other personal information.
Once you enter your information, the damage is done, and the scammer has the power to wreak havoc on your financial life.
The bottom line: Vanguard does not send unsolicited e-mails asking for personal information, nor do we include links with such requests in unsolicited e-mails we send to clients.
If you receive such a message claiming to be from Vanguard, please notify us immediately. Do not:
- Reply to the message.
- Click any links in the message.
- Open any attached documents.
Above all, don't hesitate to contact us if you suspect someone is trying to access your Vanguard account information fraudulently.
How to stay safe online
Check vanguard.com's Security Center to stay current on the latest security issues and get advice on protecting your account and personal information.
Vanguard's commitment—and your responsibilities
The privacy and security of your account information are very important to Vanguard. We use state-of-the-art technology to help safeguard your information, but we need your help.
Some simple rules of thumb:
1. Protect your information.
- Make sure your user name, password, and answers to your security questions are unique and strong.
- Do not access your Vanguard accounts from a "public" computer, as you may not know what programs may be installed on it and possibly tracking your activity.
- Never share your user name, password, or other account-related information with anyone. If you must write down your log-on information, keep it in a safe place.
- Clear any temporarily stored copies of online information by closing your browser after signing off.
- Do not leave your computer unattended while logged on to vanguard.com.
2. Protect your computer.
- Make sure any computer you use to access vanguard.com has up-to-date security and anti-spyware, antivirus, and firewall software.
3. Do not reply to e-mail requests for personal or financial information.
- Never respond to, open an attachment in, or click on a link within an e-mail if you suspect the message is fraudulent.