How Marketers Can Learn From the FTC’s Response For a Phishing Attack

Posted by Tom Sather 


Just this week the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the U.S. government agency responsible for regulating all communication channels, warned that their name and brand were being spoofed and used in a phishing blast. If your “brand” is relatively known, either locally, nationally, or internationally then like the FTC, you are at risk of having your brand hijacked and used for fraudulent purposes. No matter how malicious the attack, a phishing attack requires a marketer to communicate to customers the exact words that can kill future engagement and revenue – “Don’t open my emails." 

The FTC responded correctly to the attack and advised the public:

  1. Don't click on any links
  2. Delete any emails from the FTC with subject lines "NOTIFICATION OF CONSUMER COMPLAINT"
  3. File a complaint with the FTC
  4. Provided a picture of phishing scam

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That was the only way to respond to phishing attacks in the past. Today, using email intelligence to protect your brand means stopping those phishing attacks before any phishing emails reach consumers' inboxes. If the FTC was a Return Path client using our Domain Protect solution, the malicious emails would have been proactively blocked at many major ISPs. The FTC’s subscribers simply would never have seen the fraudulent emails because they would have never have been delivered to the inbox. With Domain Protect, a marketer (or a government agency) can rest assured they never have to tell a customer “Don’t open my emails”.




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About Tom Sather

Email data and deliverability expert Tom Sather has worked with top-tier brands to diagnose and solve inbox placement and sender reputation issues as a strategic consultant with Return Path. As the company’s senior director of research, Tom is a frequent speaker and writer on email marketing trends and technology. His most recent analysis of new inbox applications’ effects on consumer behavior was widely cited across leading business media outlets including the Financial Times, Ad Age, and Media Post.

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