Posts Tagged ‘Bcc’

Adopt A Puppy

Wednesday, April 21st, 2010

Dog lovers beware! That “free” puppy could cost you thousands of dollars.

Unlike most species of email fraud “adopt a puppy” fraud appeals to the victim’s better nature by providing a chance to rescue a puppy.

Everybody loves puppies right?

On the other hand, since the puppy to be rescued is usually of some desirable breed and therefore might be worth several hundred dollars, the victim’s motivation might still be greed.

Either way, there’s no such thing as a free puppy (at least not from some stranger that emails you out of the blue).

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International Conference Invitation

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

Today we’re going to look at conference invitation fraud. This is not the most common fraud type but it still occurs often enough to deserve mention in our ongoing email fraud series.

Conference invitation fraud goes after your vanity and to a lesser extent your charitable impulses. To fall for this type of fraud you have to believe that your presence would be desired at an international conference on say, racism, or world hunger, or maybe condom use in Africa. Whatever the cause, you are invited to represent your nation or organization at the conference. All you need to do is follow up by contacting the representative listed in the email.

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Support Our Troops

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

In today’s email fraud post we will be discussing messages that are intended to appeal to your patriotism (and greed). These messages pretend to be from soldiers in the field. More specifically, from “military personnel” looking for someone to help them smuggle large amounts of some valuable commodity out of a war zone.

This type of fraud asks you to believe that someone you never heard of has found a large cache of cash (or gold, or diamonds, etc.) in Saddam Hussein’s summer home or in an unguarded bank (like in the movie Three Kings) and needs your help to get it out of whatever theater of operations they claim to be in. You are expected to trust this person because they’re fighting for your freedom, never mind that they’re trying to involve you in a criminal conspiracy. Besides, the government would probably just keep the money so it’s better that you and the unknown soldier split it instead (so much for patriotism).

The following is one of the best examples we’ve seen in a while:

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Forwards: The Other Unwanted Email Category

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

One of the most annoying types of unwanted email is the mass forward. You know, the kind where one of your “friends” sends a heart-warming story about a dog or a list of interesting “facts” about bananas to everyone in their email address book. (More often than not that friend also sends everyone’s address to everyone else too but that’s another story.)

The reason this stuff is so annoying is that you can’t just block the person sending it because, most likely, they are a friend and might actually send you something you’re interested in at some point. On the other hand you really don’t care about an amber alert notice that was proven false five years ago. So, if you can’t block them, what can you do?

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Don’t Be A Jack-ass

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Today’s fraud lesson is about mules. A mule’s role is part victim and part accomplice.¬† The job of a mule¬† is most often to launder money or receive and re-ship goods.

Mules are needed because, although it is easy for criminals in one country to obtain credit card information from victims in other countries, it is not so easy to use stolen credit card info to obtain goods. For example: buying a big screen TV on the Internet with a U.S. issued credit card and having it shipped to Benin tends to make the card issuer suspicious. Having it delivered in the U.S. and re-shipped to Benin works better; for that you need a mule.

The following is an example of a typical mule recruiting attempt: more »

Learn to use Bcc

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

One of our staff recently received (on an unfiltered account) a forward of one of the many silly hoaxes that circulate periodically (“Pleeeease Reeead it was on Good Morning America”).

As he scrolled through the message, curious to find out exactly which silly hoax it was he became increasingly horrified at what he was seeing.

The message had been forwarded many times before reaching the person that forwarded it to him and each of the forwarders had openly published what appeared to be their entire address list.

This brings up two issues (only one of which will be addressed here): more »