Phishing Alert: Outlook Account Deactivation Scam | Information Technology | University of Pittsburgh

Phishing Alert: Outlook Account Deactivation Scam

Friday, November 10, 2017 - 12:56


Computing Services and Systems Development (CSSD) is responding to a new email phishing scam that claims your Outlook email account will be deactivated unless you click a link to revalidate it. The link actually takes visitors to a harmful webpage that attempts to collect their username and password.

The following is a sample of the recent fraudulent email. If you receive this message (or any message similar to it), please report it as a phishing scam by forwarding the email message as an attachment to Detailed instructions on reporting scams are available at


Subject: RE: De-activation

Your outlook account will be De-activated shortly.

To stop De-activation CLICK HERE [link removed]

The Outlook account team


The link takes readers to a harmful webpage similar to the one shown below that attempts to convince them to provide their email address and password: 

CSSD strongly recommends that you do not reply to unsolicited emails or emails from unverifiable sources. Avoid clicking on links contained in such emails, as these may lead to sites that contain harmful software. If a link looks suspicious, you can hover over the link with your mouse to preview the URL without clicking on it.

In addition, CSSD recommends that all users install Symantec Endpoint Protection software and use the LiveUpdate feature to get the latest virus definitions. As a complement to Symantec Endpoint Protection, CSSD offers Malwarebytes Premium for individuals and departments at no cost. Students, faculty, and staff can download Malwarebytes and Symantec Endpoint Protection at no cost through the Software Download Service at My Pitt. Departments can submit a help request to obtain Malwarebytes for multiple machines.

Please contact the Technology Help Desk at 412-624-HELP [4357] if you have any questions regarding this announcement.