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Email Spam

Email spam is unsolicited mass email. Some spam email can contain offensive content or it may have an attachment that contains a virus that has the potential to harm your computer or the network.

All incoming outside email messages are passed through the Ryerson mail filters to determine whether they are legitimate senders or from "spammers".

Appropriate measures will be taken to try and reduce the amount of incoming spam and reduce the number of messages that have been falsely flagged as spam.

Currently, incoming outside email messages passed through the Ryerson mail filters which are considered to be spam are quarantined and not delivered to your mailbox.  This may cause potential problems because some legitimate messages are falsely flagged as spam, quarantined and the users don’t know about it.  Currently, users contact CCS to check if a message they were expecting has been quarantined and if so CCS will manually release the message from quarantine.

Starting late March 2017 users will be able to manage their spam messages.  Ryerson’s email system will no longer quarantine messages for users.  RMail users will see a new folder called "Spam" in their mailbox and all spam messages will be delivered to that folder.  If a message is not spam users should report it to notspam@ryerson.ca.  They will also be able to move the message from the "Spam" folder into their Inbox or any other folder.  The system will automatically remove messages in the Spam folder that are older than 30 days.

To protect your computer from spam, you should always take precautions including:

  • Only open email from familiar contacts
  • Update your antivirus protection regularly and make sure email filtering is selected
  • Filter out unwanted spam messages by adjusting your email settings

Forward a Message With “Full Headers”

Often when CCS troubleshoots an email issue, or reported spam, it’s useful to have the “full headers” of a message.  This helps to accurately track where a message came from.   

Forwarding from Ryerson Webmail (RMail)

  • Mark the message as “spam” by clicking the Spam button above the message.  This will send a copy of the message to CCS and move it to the Spam folder.
     

Ryerson Gmail

  • Select the message.
  • Using the drop-down menu in the upper-right, select Show original.
  • Click "Copy to clipboard".
  • Paste into a new message.
     

Thunderbird

  • Select the message.
  • From the “View” menu select Headers then All.
  • Forward the message.
     

Outlook 2010

  • Double-click the message to open it in a new window.  
  • Click the “File” tab in the new window and click the Properties button.  
  • The headers are in the bottom portion of the window (beside “Internet headers:”). Copy headers.
  • Forward the original message and paste the copied headers into that message before sending it.

Reporting Messages Falsely Categorized as Spam

RMail

Ryerson Webmail (RMail)

  • From the Spam folder, mark the message as “not spam” by clicking the not spam button above the message.  This will send a copy of the message to CCS and move the message to your Inbox.
     

Gmail

  • Mark the message as “not spam” by clicking the not spam button above the message.
  • If the yellow bar above the message (“Why is this message in Spam?”) indicates that is was blocked due to your “organization's request” (see below), forward the message (with full headers) to notspam@ryerson.ca.

 

Using the Ryerson Logo in Your Gmail Signature

Because of the way some external sites block Google content, it’s best to use an image hosted on Ryerson’s servers. Here is an image available to use: http://ryerson.ca/content/dam/brand/Ryerson-Logo-Email-Signature/RyersonLogo-EmailSig.png

You can add this to your Gmail signature.  Click on the gear icon and select Settings General Signature.  Then use the Insert Image iconselect the Web Address (URL) tab and enter the web address.

Phishing

Ryerson is receiving an increasing number of "phishing" emails. Phishing emails are designed to deceive you into giving away confidential information like your Ryerson username and password, credit card number or bank account information. This page provides guidance on how to recognize phishing emails so you can report them and delete them.

Common traits of phishing emails:

  • The sender's address is suspicious.
  • The "To" field is blank or for another person.
  • The email includes typos or grammatical errors.
  • The message contains an urgent request for personal information.
  • The message requires immediate action to avoid a problem like losing access to your Ryerson account.
  • When you hover over a link or button in the email, it directs you to an address (usually suspicious) unrelated to the text in the link.
  • We've provided some samples to help you detect phishing emails. Many of these examples are derived from phishing emails that were sent to Ryerson email addresses. The links in these examples have been slightly modified to make them less dangerous but please don't attempt to visit these sites.

Suspicious Senders

Here is an example where the sender is pretending the email is from a ryerson address, but the actual address is really from uniswa.szabc.

Example 1: From: 'no-reply@ryerson.ca' <pjmusi@uniswa.szabc>

Here is an example of an email that claims to be from FedEx where the actual address is from specweldfab.revitalsite.comabc.

Example 2: From:	FedEx International Ground <richard.shepherd@specweldfab.revitalsite.comabc>

It’s always worth taking a moment to carefully check the full email address of the sender.

Urgent Requests for Personal Information

Here is part of an urgent request that included a link to a fake Ryerson login page:

Urgent request 1: 'Due to high numbers of inactive library accounts on our server, you are urged to validate your library account within a week after receiving this e-mail'

Here’s another example of an urgent request:

Urgent request 2: We would be shutting down several RYERSON MAIL Accounts. You will have to confirm your RYERSON MAIL Account.
So you are required to provide us with the following information.

Full Name:
Username:
Password:
Telephone

Both of these fake messages include tell-tale grammatical errors and demand you take action to avoid losing access to your account.

Suspicious Links

Hovering over a link with your mouse and carefully checking the URL is one of the best ways to detect a phishing email. If you are using a tablet or smartphone carefully press and hold the link, rather than tap, to reveal the true URL. Here's an example of a link that goes to a fake Ryerson login page hosted in a server in another country.

If you hover over the link without clicking you will see a very long URL (it may appear in the bottom-left of your browser) like this:

Suspicious Link with long URL

It may remind you of what you see in the location field of your browser when you log into the my.ryerson.ca portal. But it is not the same. Here is the valid address that you see when you login to my.ryerson.ca:

https://cas.ryerson.ca/login?service=https%3A%2F%2Fmy.ryerson.ca%2FLogin

Aside from the fact the fake link is longer, how can you tell which one is a link to a server at Ryerson and which one is not?

  1. The legitimate URL has a forward slash after cas.ryerson.ca/, the fake one has a forward slash after cas.ryerson.ca.eduq.tkabc/.
  2. Another give away is that the fake URL starts with http:// while the valid one starts with https://. Ryerson login pages will always start with the secure https://

Here is fake URL that has been well-crafted to look like a Ryerson address:

https://cas-ryerson.com/login?service=https%3A%2F%3Fmy.ryerson.ca%2FLogin

Notice how a hyphen has replaced the dot. A valid Ryerson host name that isn’t simply http://ryerson.ca must end with .ryerson.ca/

Let's look at two fedex URLs. Which one takes you to a Fedex site and which one to somewhere more dangerous?

  1. https://www.fedex.com/apps/myprofile/loginandcontact/?locale=en_ca
  2. http://www.fedex.info.szabc/apps/myprofile/loginandcontact/?locale=en_ca

To tell the difference, locate the first forward slash after the https://:

  1. https://www.fedex.com/apps/myprofile/loginandcontact/?locale=en_ca
  2. http://www.fedex.info.szabc/apps/myprofile/loginandcontact/?locale=en_ca

The first link takes you to the real fedex.com site. The second just has fedex in the name.

If you aren't sure about a link, type a link that you know is correct like my.ryerson.ca or fedex.com into the location bar of your browser instead of clicking.

What About Google Apps Links?

The Ryerson community makes extensive use of Google Apps including Drive, Calendar, and Groups. The URLs for these applications can be very long but they all start with a host name that ends with .google.com:

  • https://drive.google.com/
  • https://docs.google.com/
  • https://calendar.google.com/

The host name always ends before the first forward slash with .google.com/

Some attackers have used personal Google accounts and Google Forms to try to get people to "login" to a Google Form. This is relatively easy to spot because Google Forms don't look like Ryerson's or Google's login screens. Google has even added a warning at the bottom of every Google Form that says: "Never submit passwords through Google Forms."

To Report a Phishing Email

Link to top of page

What to Check if Your Account has been Compromised

Gmail

Click on the gear icon and select Settings > Accounts.  Verify that all information beside “Send mail as:” is correct.

Click on the gear icon and select Settings Forwarding and POP/IMAP. Check that your mail isn’t being forwarded to anywhere you don’t want it to be.

RMail

Click Options Mail > Local Account Forwarding.  Check that your mail isn’t being forwarded to anywhere you don’t want it to be

 

 

CONTACT THE HELP DESK

Students

Phone icon416-979-5000 x6840

Email iconhelp@ryerson.ca

Maps iconKerr Hall West, Room 71

Faculty/Staff

Phone iconx6806

Email iconhelp@ryerson.ca


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