GoDaddy Criticized for Conducting Phishing Test by Sending Fake Holiday Bonus Emails to Staff

GoDaddy is getting some heat after sending out a fake holiday bonus email to its employees to test them to see if they'd fall for phishing scams.


Image via Getty


GoDaddy is receiving backlash after sending its employees a holiday work bonus email that ended up being fake just to test them to see if they would fall for phishing scams.

Obtained by 12 News, the contents of the email clearly describe its employees receiving a holiday bonus, despite this not being true.

"Happy Holiday GoDaddy! 2020 has been a record year for GoDaddy, thanks to you," the email read. "Though we cannot celebrate together during our annual Holiday Party, we want to show our appreciation and share a $650 one-time Holiday bonus! To ensure that you receive your one-time bonus in time for the Holidays, please select your location and fill in the details by Friday, December 18th."

Ken Colburn of Data Doctors told 12 News that tests like this are important for companies to do so that its employees don't fall for phishing tricks that could compromise company information. "The line-level employees in a company have always kind of been the prime targets for hackers," he said.

"Getting them to be really much more suspicious, that's an important task. But doing it in a way that's not going to upset the employees is equally as important," he added.

This email also comes just few months GoDaddy's CEO Aman Bhutani announced company-wide layoffs that impacted employees across the country. After this email was sent out the company held a town hall where many employees anonymously voiced their disappointment in GoDaddy's decision to test them during such a difficult time.

Latest in Life