November 23, 2022: AHS is receiving reports of a scam in which text messages, that appear to be from AHS, promise Albertans money for getting a COVID-19 vaccine and ask for credit card information. AHS will never ask you to provide your credit card or SIN # via email, text or over the phone. Please report this to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.
Phishing email messages, text messages, websites, and phone calls are designed to steal money and/or information. Cybercriminals can do this by tricking you into clicking malicious links, providing instructions to download malicious files or confirm personal information like usernames and passwords.
Large organizations are frequent targets of phishing scams, and Alberta Health Services is no different. AHS has been the target of several malicious phishing scams directed at staff and also the public.
Such incidents have become almost commonplace. Some have been sent to randomly generated staff members across all departments of AHS; others have been targeted specifically at certain areas of the organization, such as payroll. Recently the public has been targeted using Alberta Health Services name.
These incidents highlight the importance of all of us remaining extremely vigilant when it comes to how we use our email accounts and phones, and in particular, what we do with suspicious messages.
Hackers are becoming more and more sophisticated at designing phishing scams that appear to be legitimate, but are in fact fraudulent attempts at gathering personal information or infecting a computer network with a virus.
AHS takes its responsibility as the keepers of personal healthcare information extremely seriously, and does everything it can to ensure that information is secure and protected.
AHS also has many security measures in place, to protect its systems from criminals. These measures are constantly evolving to counter outside threats that are also constantly changing and adapting.
But we also need to rely on our staff and the public to be diligent and aware of possible scams.
The phishing emails, or texts, may look extremely authentic – they are designed that way so that you will act, either by providing personal details, or by clicking on a link that then allows the hacker access to your account.
Here are some tips on what to look out for in phishing scams. Think before you click, and keep an eye out for emails or texts that:
Although AHS always takes a proactive approach to prevent phishing scams like these from affecting our systems, we ask that AHS staff and the public be extra vigilant with any suspicious emails or texts.
If you have questions, or are questioning the legitimacy of an email or text you receive, you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Each and every one of us needs to do our part to make sure that our online lives are kept safe and secure.