There are a lot of tips out there for how to avoid phishing emails. With a combination of vigilance and third-party tools, you can avoid scams, but if you’re a Gmail user, there’s one simple setting that will help you avoid phishing emails.
One of the many great, overlooked features Gmail features is the ability to label messages coming from authenticated recipients [No Longer Available] that are often the target of phishing scams. Here’s how to get that feature.
Click on the settings button in the top right-hand corner.
The next step is to navigate to the “Labs” tab, where you can enable a wide variety of settings for your Gmail account. One of the first options under “Available Labs” is “Authentication icon for verified senders”.
After enabling it, you will see a little key symbol next to authenticated emails.
You can also take a closer look at emails you receive that aren’t automatically labeled as authenticated. In Gmail, open up the message and click the little arrow right beneath the sender’s email address. Look at the “mailed-by” or “signed-by” field to make sure it came from the domain associated with the sender.
If you see a question mark next to the sender’s name, proceed with caution with this message.
Google also provides instructions for what to do if you’re using an email client. After you open the message, check the message header. In Apple Mail, for example, you can find this by going to View > Message > Default Headers.
This will display the “Authentication-Results” at the very top of the paragraph. If you find spf=pass or dkim=pass, you’ll know the message is authenticated.
Do you have any tips for how to watch out of phishing scams in Gmail? Let us know in the comments.