Unsubscribing to political campaign spam could lead to identity theft, expert says

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – As candidates hit the campaign trails this election season, so are people trying to steal your identity.  

According to Kevin Campbell, Cyber Security Expert, and CEO of data management company, Syniti, schemers are most likely getting your information from public voter registration records and sending you political junk mail via text message and email.

“Phishing is any kind of masking of emails with the intention of grabbing your credentials,” said Campbell. “They see a huge opportunity with these ads, which is to engage you so that you’ll be clicking and then you know, they can capture your credentials.”

Campbell says by hitting unsubscribe or replying ‘STOP’ to these forms of communication, you could be opening yourself up to identify theft.

“Block an email,” said Campbell. “You can block the cell phone from either calls, robocalls, and or the texts. You know, you could also be a little bit more More sophisticated and send them to a spam folder.”

So how do you tell if an email is legit? Campbell says if the email address doesn’t match the name of the sender in the body of the email, then that’s a red flag.

“Many times, what you’ll find is when you click on it, it will say from the Biden campaign or the Trump campaign. But then the email underneath it is some random email in the UK or South Africa, or China,” said Campbell.

Ultimately Campbell suggests that if you would like to support a candidate, you should call their office directly. He also recommends changing your passwords every 30 days.

“You can expect as many emails as you can get, you can expect twice as many texts. So, make sure that you’re on the alert for those and you go block them. You can put them on the ‘Do Not Call’ list but you can also just block them on your phone and you can report them to the many services that are out there.”


Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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