Information Technology Services

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What is Phishing?

Phishing is an attempt to obtain personal and/or financial information from an individual through the use of e-mail or pop-up boxes. These methods are often designed to look like they come from an "official" source in an attempt to trick the individual into providing sensitive data.

What should I know?

Alert BellTips for Identifying a Phish (PDF).

A legitimate institution will never ask you for any of the following information through any form of electronic communication:

  • your MySanDiego username and password,
  • your e-mail address and password,
  • your computer password,
  • your Social Secuirty Number,
  • your mother's maiden name,
  • your bank account information, or
  • your bank PIN code.

What does a phishing e-mail look like?

Below are some examples of phishing e-mails received by members of the University of San Diego community:
Example One | Example Two | Example Three | More examples

Report a phishing attempt

If you receive an e-mail requesting information from you and are unsure of the legitimacy of the e-mail, do not respond to the e-mail. Report any concerns to:

You can also report phishing e-mails to the Anti-Phishing Working Group, a volunteer organization that maintains a repository of phishing scam e-mails and Web sites to help people identify and avoid being scammed in the future.