The hackers of today use sophisticated techniques and phishing schemes to gather Gmail login information and personal information. Once your Gmail account has been compromised, hackers then have access to not only your email, but any files you have on your Drive account and your Chrome browsing information. They may even be able to make purchases on the Google Play Store.
Before you can understand how to verify a Gmail.com login page, you need to know how these phishing schemes work and how to avoid them.
Gmail Phishing Schemes
Hackers often send out emails to unsuspecting people asking for either their personal information or for them to navigate to a login page to log into their account. In both cases, emails are sent from what appears to be Google and even the login pages are designed to look just like Google’s own login system.
In the past, the easiest way to identify a phishing scheme was to check the address bar. Oftentimes, the address of the webpage was not Gmail or appeared suspicious.
Now, unscrupulous hackers are creating web pages that appear to be hosted on Google’s servers and are even protected by SSL to look even more genuine. Once your username and password have been entered, the information is sent to an unsecured server. Oftentimes, the person logging in has no idea their information has been stolen. This makes it difficult to determine whether or not you are really attempting to log into your account or just handing over your username and password.
Here are a few important things to remember:
- Google will never send you an email asking for your personal information or your login information.
- Google will never send you messages containing executable attachments.
Before clicking on a link inside of an email, always check to make sure that the message was authenticated by the domain the sender is claiming to be from. This can easily done by following the steps below:
- Open the message.
- Click the drop-down arrow found right underneath the sender’s name.
- Check the “signed-by” and “mailed-by” listings to see if the domain matches sender’s email address.
Verifying the Correct Gmail Login Page
There are a few different ways to verify whether or not you are on the correct Gmail.com login page.
- Visit Gmail directly at https://mail.google.com/ or http://mail.google.com/. This is the safest way to log into your account and to verify that you are on the proper login page.
- If you do click on a link and are brought to a sign-in screen, double check the URL to ensure that it is correct. Click on images or links on the page to make sure that they direct you to the proper pages.
As a general rule, avoid clicking on any links in an email, and instead, visit Gmail directly. Again, Gmail will not ask you for personal information or ask you to log into your Gmail account to view a document. If you receive such a message and it appears genuine, log into your account by visiting https://mail.google.com/ directly.