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AFS Will Never Ask You to Send Gift Cards, and Other Phishing Facts

Monday, June 8, 2020   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Lorraine Cashman

Beware phishing schemes that may appear to be messages from AFS or AFS officers, like a recent one in circulation that presented as a request for gift cards (in support of a good cause) from AFS President Norma E. CantĂș. Previous phishing attempts directed at AFS members have also included the AFS logo.

If you're paying close attention, you may notice that the sender address in many phishing messages is phunny, but some scammers have used plausible seeming addresses that simply mask the real sender.

The best tip-off that a message is a scam is the content: AFS may invite you to pay for AFS services or contribute to AFS initiatives, but our messages will always direct you to our secure website for all transactions, including donations. AFS will not solicit for non-AFS related projects, nor ask for any personal information from you in reply to an email.

If you receive a message from AFS or an AFS member that seems strange, you might take a moment to check our website to verify the content before replying: all messages from AFS to members are also posted in the AFS Review; if a message seems to be a personal communication from a member, use the Member Directory to verify their email address or reach out to them yourself.

Or contact us! We can set your mind at ease, and we'd absolutely prefer to be alerted when such attempts are made.

At this point, because we pursue these cases as far as we can to identify the security issues, we can confirm that our member data has not been breached.  However, bad actors can take advantage of resources that folklorists use to stay connected, including social media channels and contact information that has been shared publicly to facilitate networking.

AFS has heightened security protocols in recent years, such as revising our proposal submission process to enforce that all meeting participants submit their own personal and proposal information, review our privacy policy and give their informed consent concerning which data can be shared and under which circumstances.

AFS will not share your membership, meeting registration or proposal data without your explicit consent.

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American Folklore SocietySister Society: SIEF
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