Don’t get scammed: How to identify legitimate emails from MHBE

phishing attackHave you ever received an email that didn’t seem quite right? Trust your instincts to spot when a communication is fishy — or phishy.

Phishing attacks use email or malicious websites to solicit personal information by posing as a trustworthy organization.

An attacker may send an email that invites you to click on a link or requests account information, often suggesting that there is a problem. When users respond with the requested information, attackers can use it to gain access to private information.

Here are tips to help you avoid a phishing attack, particularly from a person or agency that claims to represent Maryland Health Connection or Maryland Health Benefit Exchange:

  • NEVER give out sensitive information unless you initiated the communication and you are sure that you have the correct party.
  • Beware of urgent or threatening language. Emails containing phrases like “Your account will be closed” or “Urgent action required” try to get you to act immediately.
  • Look for clues of a phishing message, like general or missing greetings (such as “Dear Customer” or “Dear Member”) and typos and grammatical mistakes. Legitimate messages usually do not have major spelling mistakes or poor grammar.
  • Delete messages that ask for private information or look suspicious
  • Don’t click on links (URLs) or call phone numbers provided in messages. Instead, look them up yourself.
  • Hover your mouse over a link to see where it points before you click on it. Phishers often hide a malicious link among several legitimate ones. If the link address looks weird, don’t click on it.
  • Don’t click on attachments. Malware can damage files on your computer, steal your passwords or spy on you without your knowledge. Don’t open any email attachments you weren’t expecting.

If you receive a suspicious email that appears to be from Maryland Health Connection requesting account or personal information, always check first with our call center or the producer operations team to verify. You should provide any personal information only through our secure email system. For other emails you’re unsure about, report them to your organization’s IT or security staff, if you have one.

About “The Classroom”

“The Classroom” is Maryland Health Connection’s blog for its consumer assistance community, including navigators, authorized brokers, certified application counselors, caseworkers and call center staff. Check here for updates on training, website releases, new tools, and other helpful information as you help get Marylanders covered through the health insurance marketplace.

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For questions on this topic or to suggest additional topics for The Classroom, email mhc.trainingsupport@maryland.gov.