Don’t let phishing threaten your small business

We recently received this message from a small business owner:

I am stunned by the number of fake emails I get through my store’s email system, and some of them are quite sophisticated. I get them all the time from “UPS,” the “Better Business Bureau,” and today, “Bank of America.” Most of the time, they encourage me to open an attachment and fill out a form to prevent my account from being closed or to address a customer complaint. But sometimes the language and graphics are really quite professional. How can I protect my business against this kind of fraud?

The messages described here are known as phishing and if a phishing message appears in your email inbox, you can delete it or report it by using the newest versions of Internet Explorer, Hotmail, and Microsoft Office Outlook.  

Use Microsoft tools to report a suspected scam

  • Internet Explorer. If you are on a site that seems suspicious, click the gear icon and then point to Safety. Then click Report unsafe website and use the web page that appears to report the website.
  • Hotmail. If you receive a suspicious email message that asks you for personal information, click the check box next to the message in your Hotmail inbox. Click Mark as and then point to Phishing scam.
  • Microsoft Office Outlook. Attach the suspicious email message to a new email message and forward it to To learn how to attach an email message to an email message, see Attach a file or other item to an email message.

You can also download the Microsoft Junk E-mail Reporting Add-in for Microsoft Office Outlook.

Reduce the number of phishing emails you receive

  • Use email software with built-in spam filtering
  • Keep your spam and phishing filters current
  • Be careful about sharing your email or instant message address


About the Author
Eve Blakemore

Group Manager, Trustworthy Computing

Eve Blakemore is a Group Manager for Trustworthy Computing who delivers consumer guidance around the latest trends in security and privacy. Eve joined Microsoft in 1998 and has worked in corporate and field roles with Microsoft Learning, US Public Sector, Read more »

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  1. Anonymous

    Although there is only me on my network why has my site been blocked?

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