Again, today’s Scam of the Day comes directly from my own email box and it may seem familiar, as I am sure that many of you have received a similar or, perhaps even, identical email. It appears to come from a friend of yours, but, in fact, what has occurred is that your friend’s email account has been hacked, which, as I have described many times before is an easy task to accomplish. When I clicked for details of the Internet history of the email, I was able to see that the email actually originated with someone other than my friend. As always, the scenario involves a friend in dire need and despite the outlandishness of the email, many caring friends do fall for this scam.
Here is a copy of the email:
This message may be coming to you as a surprise but I need your help.Few days back we made an unannounced vacation trip to London United Kingdom.Everything was going fine until last night when we were mugged on our way back to the hotel.They Stole all our cash,credit cards and cellphone but thank God we still have our lives and passport.Another shocking is that the hotel manager has been unhelpful to us for reasons i don’t know. I’m writing you from a local library cybercafe..I’ve reported to the police and after writing down some statements that’s the last i had from them.i contacted the consulate and all i keep hearing is they will get back to me. i need your help ..I need you to help me out with a loan to settle my bills here so we can get back home, our return flight leaves soon. I’ll refund the money as soon as i get back. All i need is $1,650 ..Let me know if you can get me the money then I tell you how to get it to me.
I’m freaked out at the moment
Sometimes it is the grammar, spelling or just a different writing style that is a tip off that the email is a scam, but in any event, you have to ask yourself why would someone email such a plea. Other times the plea comes by way of a Facebook account when your friend’s Facebook account has been hacked, which is also easy to do. The first thing you should do is to contact your real friend, not to offer money, but to let them know that their email or Facebook account has been hacked so that they can send out an email blast to all of the people on their email list to warn them of the scam. You should also advise them to take security measures to clean up their account. I describe those measures in detail in my book “50 Ways to Protect Your Identity in a Digital Age.” Scamicide contains a link to Amazon, if you are interested in purchasing the book. Finally, if you actually have any thought that the email might be legitimate, during the course of your telephone call with your friend, you can confirm that they are not in circumstances more dire than being a victim of identity theft.