Background check email spam is a huge problem. On average, I receive 7-10 of these emails every single day. That fact alone is enough to have me concerned—not because I’m worried about someone checking the public records on me, but because this level of activity indicates that the emails are working. In this case, “working” means tricking recipients into clicking a link in the email.
One background check email example
Public Records Notice #19764084
Re: Background Report Check
To: (this was my correct email address)
This automated notice is to inform you that someone run a background-check report on you.
Your criminal/arrest records are publicly available online for anyone to see.
Types of information available:
Find you who may be viewing your records here: (this was a link to a site with the domain “instbggreportingdocs”. I won’t supply the extension because I don’t want to encourage anyone to go there.)
What’s wrong with this background check email
Did you spot the grammatical error in the first complete sentence? To be honest, even I didn’t notice it at first. There’s also another typo in the last complete sentence—“find you who”? I won’t even try to guess which language that one was translated from. So, we have two grammatical errors in a short email. It doesn’t pass the sniff test, but if you’re not paying attention, those booboos might just go unnoticed.
Why background check email spam is a problem
Two factors make the background check email something to worry about. First, the idea of people running background checks on us is enough to give most people concern. Even those who have no reason to be concerned might begin to wonder, “what if?” What if someone really did run a check on me? What if my record includes incorrect information? Should I be worried about this?
The other factor I mentioned up front is the sheer volume of these emails. Even with a very low probability of success, sooner or later, the spammer is going to get lucky.
The site referenced in this example is on at least one blacklist and should be considered a dangerous place to visit.
Dealing with background checks
Simply send the background check emails to the spam folder. They’re not legitimate and you should never click one of the links in the email. On the other hand, it is possible for almost anyone to run a background check on someone else. That’s the subject of today’s scam tip this month in The Snitch.