AOL Account Security

Does an email you received look suspicious?

1Look for these scam clues

Scam emails often feature legitimate company logos, return addresses and even 1-800 phone numbers. Just remember that no service will email you asking for your password.

Here are some things to check in any suspicious email. They follow the initials of a handy little acronym, SCAMD:

S – Spelling and grammar. This is usually the first best tip-off that something’s bogus. Real services pay for professional copywriting and editing, which typically result in emails that don’t have spelling or grammatical errors. If you’re looking at an email with multiple spelling or grammar errors, it’s probably a scam.

C – Certified Mail. Certified AOL Mail is a feature designed to help you easily identify email that has been sent by AOL. In your inbox, you’ll see an AOL icon next to any AOL Certified Mail.

A – Asking for personal information. Almost no legitimate company will email you requesting personal information such as your password or your social security number. If you have any suspicions about the email, call the company before you click on any links within the email or provide any personal information. NOTE: Don’t use a phone number provided in a suspicious email. Sometimes scammers will set up fake toll-free phone numbers to collect your information. Go to the website of the company and use the “Contact Us” link to find a company’s phone number.

M – Mass Mailings. If you got an email claiming you’ve been selected to win a prize or your credit information has expired and there are 500 other recipients listed in the “to” or “cc” fields, chances are it’s a scam.

D – Details. You can often find out the true return email address of a sender by clicking on the “Details”, “Show Details”, or “Full Headers” link under the “To:” section, in the header of your email. There is typically a lot of information in this view, but if the sender is using a fake “from” address, you’ll see the real one in the details view, usually under “Reply to.”

One final word of advice: Don’t respond to a spam email. By doing so, you confirm that your email account is active, and you'll likely be flooded with more spam and scam attempts.

If you are unsure of an email's authenticity, forward the email to Highlight the message you want to forward, and then click Forward to ensure that we receive the email along with the original message. If you prefer, you can also provide additional information before sending the email.

2Report fraud

Let us know anytime you see something that doesn't look right. In general, we split "abuse" into two categories: spam (unsolicited commercial messaging) and phishing (attempts to defraud).


The best way to alert AOL to spam is to click Spam above the message. This sends the message directly to us. If you're unable to use the Spam button for some reason, you can also forward a message to


If a sender is trying to trick you into revealing confidential information, the best way to take action is to forward it to us here: If you think you've fallen for a scam and you gave out your credit card information, the first thing to do is notify your bank or credit union. If you provided your AOL password, change it now at