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Security Alert! Phishing Scam Targets UMass Amherst Community

September 25, 2017

On September 25th, 2017, a new fraudulent phishing message with the subject "ITS Announcement - Firewall project completed" began targeting UMass Amherst email users. The email appears to have been sent by "Shana Leonard," notifies the recipient "The ongoing firewall project that has been on for the past one month has just been completed," and contains a link to the "Firewall Portal." The links in the message direct the recipient to a fraudulent version of the UMass Exchange login page.

Caution: This email did not come from the University of Massachusetts. It is a phishing scam designed to trick you into providing your NetID password to get access to your personal information and/or UMass information technology services for fraudulent purposes. 

Do not respond to the fraudulent message or click the link! Responding or clicking the link in the message may put your information and the university's information and systems at risk. 

If you have already responded to the message, change your IT Account password in SPIRE immediately. 

For more information about this phishing scam or to learn more about what you can do to protect yourself, see the News section of the UMass Amherst IT website. Please report suspicious messages to

When receiving suspicious messages or messages from unknown senders, we recommend that you:

  • Verify the identity of anyone who requests your personal information. Never provide financial data or other personal information in response to an email or on an untrusted site or form.
  • Report these messages to

Learn more about phishing attacks and how to avoid getting caught: 

Phishing message:

screenshot of the phishing email, showing links with hidden addresses. the links direct to a fake UMass login page.