Beware of a spam e-mail claiming to be from FBI Director John S. Pistole.
The FBI warns that the fraudulent e-mail advises recipients that they are the beneficiary of a large sum of money, which they will be permitted to access once fees are paid and personal banking information is provided.
The appearance of the e-mail, which incorporates photographs of FBI officials and the FBI seal, leads a recipient to believe that it is authentic.
The typical schemes using the FBI name's are lottery endorsements and inheritance notifications, but they can cover a range of scams, including threats and malicious computer program attachments to bogus online auctions.
The FBI says consumers should be cautious of any unsolicited e-mail referencing the FBI, Director Robert S. Mueller III, Deputy Director Pistole, or any other FBI official claiming that the FBI is endorsing any type of Internet activity.
Do not respond, give out personal information, open attachments or click on any links, the agency says.
If you have received this or a similar e-mail, file a complaint at www.ic3.gov.