Outlook Makes It Impossible to Report Phishing Scams to PayPal and Ebay

If you are like me, you get a couple phishing scams every week.  Where most folks just delete them, I like to report them to the company they are trying to impersonate.  Microsoft has this page dedicated to helping individuals determine phishing scams, and how to report them.  The problem is that most of the phishing emails contain images, which Outlook will, rightfully, not download (so that the person that sent the email doesn’t get a ping that you actually read the email).  If you try to forward the message, Outlook requires you to download the images (thus alerting the phishing party that you read the email).  So in the Microsoft guide, they tell you to create a new email, include the suspected email as an attachment, and manually copy the headers over to the new message.  But, to report a phishing email to EBay or PayPal they want you to forward the email to them, not send it as an attachment, which is the exact opposite of the MS guide.  If you try to follow Microsoft’s suggested method, and report the email to EBay or PayPal, you will get a response asking you to forward the original email, not include it as an attachment.  Do you see where I’m going?  You can’t use Outlook to forward the email without downloading the images, and EBay and PayPal will not accept it any other way.

My solution at the moment is to log onto my email via webmail and forward it, but there has to be a better way.  The average person will not go to this extreme to report the scam, and it will not be reported.  Maybe one of the Outlook MVPs out there has a better solution?

The preceding blog entry has been syndicated from the DonXML Demsak’s All Things Techie Blog.  Please post all comments on the original post. 

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