How do I identify a legitimate website?

This FAQ was last modified on: Friday, August 19, 2016 03:34pm
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What is phishing?

Phishing is a fraudulent attempt, usually made through email, to steal your personal information. The best way to protect yourself from phishing is to learn how to recognize it.

Phishing emails can appear to come from Georgia Tech and ask for your personal information such as your GTID number, Birthdate, Social Security Number, GT account username or password. Some may even ask you for sensitive financial data like credit card numbers or bank account numbers.

Phishing emails can also tell you to click on a link that takes you to a site where your personal information is requested. Georgia Tech will never ask you for your password over email or on the phone.

An example of a phishing website

Marked in red are three clues that flag this page as a phishing attempt to steal your personal information. The example below is using an older design that is no longer used, but attackers could still use the design to trick users.

Note: Georgia Tech's domain is 'gatech.edu'. The example below is demonstrating a website outside of Georgia Tech's domain. 

Only on very rare occasions will a legitimate Georgia Tech URL not include 'gatech.edu'. For example:  http://gatech.e-academy.com

If you question the legitimacy of any Georgia Tech website, please feel free to give us a call at 404.894.7173. We are available 8am to 5pm Mon-Fri. 

Example of a fake GT site for phishing personal information

What a legitimate website should look like

Below are some screenshots of what your browser should look like when you are safely connected to a legitimate Georgia Tech website. Notice the URL. Be familiar with what legitimate URLs look like. Services such as MyGaTech, Buzzport, T-Square will always have a https:// in front of the address. Look for a pad lock indicating the site you are on is using SSL (Secure Socket Layer).

Example: Internet Explorer 8 on Windows 8

Windows 8 using Internet Explorer 8 to view: MyGaTech.  Notice the "Lock" icon the URL section.

  Example of a legitimate GT site using IE 8 on Windows 8

 

Example: Firefox on Windows 8

Windows 8 using Firefox 30.0 to view: MyGaTech. Notice the "Lock" icon the URL section.

Example of a legitimate GT site using Firefox on Windows 8

 

Example: Firefox on OSX (10.9) Mavericks

OS X Mavericks using Firefox to view: MyGaTech. Notice the "Lock" icon the URL section.

Example of a legitimate GT site using Firefox on OSX 10.9 Mavericks

 

Example: Safari 7 on OSX (10.9) Mavericks

OS X Mavericks using Safari 7.0.1 to view: MyGaTech. Notice the "Lock" icon the URL section.

Example of a legitimate GT site using Safari 7 on OSX 10.9 Mavericks