Topics Map > Microsoft Office 365

Microsoft 365 (Outlook) - PhishAlert Button (for Parkland Employees)

Reporting suspected phishing using the PhishAlert Button

How to Identify a Phishing Attempt

Over time, phishing techniques have become more and more advanced. Sometimes it is almost impossible to distinguish a phishing email from the real thing. However, there are some clues you can look for to help determine if an email is legitimate or not.

  • Check the sender's email address. Who is the email coming from? If it is a student, do you know them personally? If not, this can be a sign that the email is not legitimate. Other signs can include email addresses from suspicious looking domains like or instead of
  • Is there a sense of urgency? If the email is making it sound like there is something that must be done urgently, like resetting your password or renewing your account, then you should be wary. Scammers create a sense of urgency in an attempt to pressure you into falling for their phishing attempt before you have a chance to think about it. 
  • File attachments and links. If the email has a file attached or a link to a website, don't click on it until you are absolutely sure it is coming from a trusted source. Sometimes just opening these files is enough for scammers to collect some of your personal information or install malware on your computer. 
  • Is the email offering something suspicious? If the sender is offering something, like a job opportunity or expensive item, this is a sign that the email may not be legitimate. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Phishing attempts can look like any mix of the above signs. It's always better to be overly cautious than to risk a potential breach in your personal data. For more information on phishing, check out this website.

Using the PhishAlert Button to report suspected phishing messages

The PhishAlert button is for faculty and staff to report suspected phishing email messages. This is an add-in that is automatically installed in your Outlook application and Outlook for the Web. Reporting potential phishing using the PhishAlert button allows review of messages for potential threats and enables the security team to take action to protect accounts and data.

Outlook Client for Windows

Outlook Client for Mac

Outlook on the Web

Outlook Mobile Client

1. Using the PhishAlert Button - Outlook for Windows

  1. Highlight an email.

  2. Click the Home tab on the top bar to display the ribbon.
    Click "Home"

  3. Click the PhishAlert Button.
    Click the PhishAlert Button

  4. If the window is too small, it may be necessary to click the button on the right of the ribbon to see additional buttons.
    Expand Ribbon if necessary

  5. Verify the detail of the message you want to submit and click the Phish Alert button at the bottom.
    Click the button at the bottom

  6. You will receive a "Thank You" window which can be closed using the OK button.
  7. The message you report will automatically be removed from your inbox.

2. Adding the PhishAlert Button to the Quick Access Toolbar- Outlook for Windows

The PhishAlert button is available in the ribbon, however, if you wish to have it in the quick access toolbar in the upper left corner of the Outlook window for convenience, you may accomplish that with these steps:

  1. In the upper-left corner of the Outlook window, you will see an icon that appears as a horizontal line with a downwards chevron below it.
    Quick Access Toolbar Menu Dropdown

  2. Clicking this expands a menu > Select More Commands
    Quick Access Toolbar Menu

  3. From the screen that appears, perform the following actions:
    1. Choose commands from: All Commands
    2. Scroll down the left column to locate the Phish Alert Report option (they are listed alphabetically) and highlight it by clicking
    3. Click the Add button
      Settings Menu
  4. The "Phish Alert Report" option will now show in the right-hand column.
    Phish Alert in Right Column

  5. Click OK to close the window.
  6. There will now be an icon that looks like a fish hook in the upper left corner of Outlook. This is a shortcut to the PhishAlert Button and may be used in the same manner as the button in the ribbon.
    Button in Quick Access Toolbar


3. Outlook for Mac

The PhishAlert Button will also be enabled in Outlook for Mac if you are a Mac user. It is available within the "three dots" menu at the top of your Outlook screen but you can add it to the quick actions area using this procedure:

  1. Click the Three Dots to display the drop-down menu.
    Three dots on toolbar
  2. On the dropdown menu, select Customize Toolbar.
    Dropdown menu

  3. Click and drag the PhishAlert button to the top bar and click Done.
    Drag PhishAlert Button to the Top


4. PhishAlert in Outlook for Web

  1. If the PhishAlert button was added to the Quick Access Toolbar, click on an email and you will see a small PhishAlert icon in the upper-right corner of the message (near the reply and forward shortcuts).  Use this to report phishing from Outlook for Web.
    Outlook for Web PAB
  2. If the PhishAlert button was not added to the toolbar, it may be found under the "..." menu.
    3 dot menu


5. PhishAlert in Outlook Mobile Client

  1. Using Outlook for Mobile on Android or Apple devices, the PhishAlert button may be accessed by:
    1. Select the message to report
    2. Tap the 3 dots at the top right of the message (note: it is at the top-right of the message itself, not the Outlook window).
    3. Tap the PhishAlert Button, then tap "Phish Alert" to report the message.
    4. Note: You may need to swipe up to access the button.

Android Phish Alert Button iPhone Phish Alert Button

iPhone PAB 2 iPhone PAB 3


Tech Service Desk

Room A184, 217-353-3333

Fall/Spring: 7:30 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. M-Th. / 7:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Fridays

Summer: 7:30 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. M-Th

Submit an IT Help Ticket via

Keywordsphish phishing report button spam how-to security alert attempt cyber cybersecurity fish Office   Doc ID127200
OwnerPeter D.GroupParkland College
Created2023-04-11 10:36:13Updated2024-02-02 18:21:40
SitesParkland College
Feedback  0   0