University, NIH warn of phishing e-mails

The University and the NIH Federal Credit Union warned students and other account holders of receiving scam e-mail notifications meant to look like official bank communications.

The University has sent two mass e-mails – the most recent was last week – to students alerting them about the dangers of following the fraudulent e-mails’ instructions, said Alexa Kim, director of ISS Technology Services.

“At this moment we have no evidence of a widespread breath,” NIH Chairman Lindsay Alexander wrote in a mass e-mail last week. “We are cooperating fully with the local and federal law enforcement authorities.”

By clicking on the link included in the e-mail, students are brought to a fraudulent NIHFCU Web site asking users to update their accounts. This type of Internet fraud and identity theft is known as phishing.

“The first (mass e-mail) was sent because it was the beginning of the year and we did not want students, faculty or staff thinking this was legitimate,” Kim said. “The second one was sent because (the phishing) continued and because the second e-mail included different information.”

Though the University said it has only sent out two mass e-mails, many students report having received numerous copies of the same email.

Freshman Cissey Ye said: “I just disregarded the GW e-mails because I received more than one scam e-mail daily and I don’t even have an NIH account.”

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