Why am I receiving cryptic emails from my chair/colleagues/dean/etc.?

If you ever receive a cryptic email from someone at UA that seems odd (“are you around?”, “available to talk?”, “in your office?”), there’s a good chance it is a phishing email. Bad guys are more frequently spoofing emails so they can send what appears to be an email from a legitimate source, but in reality, it is an attempt to trick you into clicking a link, sharing information, or just doing something you would not ordinarily do. These individuals do not need to hack into an email account to spoof it — they often obtain a list of emails from a directory and go from there. Remember, if you receive an email that looks off, it probably is. Suspicious emails can be forwarded to ruth.pionke@ua.edu or OIT security at security@ua.edu for further investigation. You can also check the OIT website for a list of recent phishing alerts.