Just as the band, Dire Straits sang about “money for nothing and chicks for free,” many scammers appeal to our desire of something for nothing by offering free phony on-line coupons for products or services in the hope that we will fall for their promises of something for nothing and click on a link that will not take us to a link for a free product or service, but rather will result in us downloading dangerous malware, such as keystroke logging malware programs that can steal all of the information in your computer and make you a victim of identity theft.  There are many indications of the illegitimacy of these coupons, but one common one is poor grammar.  Particularly, because many of these scams originate in foreign countries where English is not the primary language, it is quite common for these phony on-line coupon offers to have poor grammar.  However, recently I received a phony offer regarding a coupon for Kentucky Fried Chicken that was laughingly amateurish.  A copy of the email is reproduced below.  Note that instead of a reference to the “Colonel,” it refers to the “Kernel.”  I know it is corny (sorry about that), but I had to share it with you.  DO NOT CLICK ON THE LINK.

“Subject: Enjoy our new crispy chicken

It’s Finger Lickin’ Good

Celebrate with the Kernel this Spring

– your personal voucher enclosed –

Use For Lunch Or Dinner ANYTIME

EXPIRES: 5/31/2013
VOUCHER ID: 1714669500684339988″


Remember, anytime you receive an email with a link, you should be wary of clicking on the link unless you are absolutely positive that the email is legitimate and the link is safe to click on.  You can never be sure who or what company is sending you an email because it is easy to either pose as someone else or to hack their email.  Certainly, this particular email with its grammatical error and its lack of a corporate logo as well as an email address from which it was sent that does not appear to come from KFC are all good indicators that the email is not to be trusted.  If you ever receive an email containing a link and you are tempted to click on the link, first contact the real company or person directly to confirm whether or not the email is legitimate and remember, despite what Dire Straits say, you don’t get anything for nothing.

Also, make sure your Firewall, security software and anti-malware software are current at all times.