Issue 43 - Hoax-Slayer Newsletter
Issue 43: 28th October, 2004
This week in Hoax-Slayer:
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The Hoax-Slayer Newsletter keeps you informed about the latest email hoaxes and current Internet scams. Hoax-Slayer also features
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eBay Phisher Scams
The online auction site eBay is again the target of phisher
scammers. The scammers are using a variety of bogus messages that
are designed to trick recipients into visiting a fraudulent
website and providing login details. Some recent eBay scam
emails have claimed that there are billing issues that customers
need to resolve by re-confirming their account information.
Others claim that the recipient's eBay account will be suspended
unless account information is updated within 72 hours. Still
others state that user information needs to be updated for
The bogus "Sign In" web page is virtually identical to a real
eBay login page.
Note that the fraudulent page is not a secure site. That is,
"https://" is not part of the URL, nor is the padlock icon
displayed in the browser's status bar. This fake page opened
via the link provided in the scam email included below.
[Click image for larger view]
EBay is only one of many major institutions that are almost
constantly targeted by phisher scammers. Be wary of any email
that requests you to access a website and provide passwords,
user names, credit card details or other sensitive personal
information. It is highly unlikely that any legitimate
institution would request such information via email. If you
receive such a request, do not reply and do not click on any
links provided. Contact the institution directly if you have
the slightest doubt regarding the veracity of a message. You
should also check the institution's real website, as
information about current phisher scams is often provided.
More information about phisher scams
Subject: Billing Issues
Dear valued eBay member:
We recently have determined that different computers have logged
onto your eBay account, and multiple password failures were present
before the logons. We now need you to re-confirm your account
information to us. If this is not completed by 05/11 2004, we
will be forced to suspend your account indefinitely, as it may
have been used for fraudulent purposes. We thank you for your
cooperation in this manner.
To confirm your eBay records click here:
We appreciate your support and understanding, as we work together
to keep eBay a safe place to trade.
Thank you for your patience in this matter.
Trust and Safety Department
Please do not reply to this e-mail as this is only a notification.
Mail sent to this address cannot be answered.
Copyright 1995-2004 eBay Inc. All Rights Reserved. Designated
trademarks and brands are the property of their respective owners.
Use of this Web site constitutes acceptance of the eBay User
are the property of their respective owners. eBay and the eBay
logo are trademarks of eBay Inc. eBay is located at 2145
Hamilton Avenue, San Jose, CA 95125.
[Click image for HTML Version of this email]
Perfume Robbery Hoax
Several new versions of the old perfume robbery email hoax have
been circulating. A new Sydney based Australian version was
submitted to me this week. I have also received a new Canadian
version as well as the US based version included below.
In 1999, a woman claimed to have been assaulted and robbed by
assailants who used a debilitating substance disguised as
perfume. The story soon made its way to the Internet and spread
rapidly as a "warning", even though there were no reported cases
of such attacks happening again. In fact, even the original
story may have been untrue.
Sometimes, people do
actually peddle perfume on the street and
in parking lots. Although the quality of this perfume might be
questionable, it IS perfume and sniffing it won't render you
helpless. These people just want to sell you cheap perfume.
They are not trying to rob you.....at least not explicitly
I suspect that sightings of these real perfume sellers might be
helping to keep this old hoax circulating vigorously. If you
received this "warning" and then later encountered a gang of
legitimate perfume peddlers, you might be inclined to take the
warning seriously and pass it on.
If this method of robbery were really happening simultaneously in
several different nations, then the mainstream media would
certainly have picked up the story. The task of warning the
public regarding such attacks would not be left to the haphazard
forwarding of an email. Regardless of the particular version that
crosses your inbox the message should be deleted rather than
Company Leaves Perfume Peddlers Feeling Betrayed
Hi all, thought this was worthy of passing along. This was sent
to my wife, by a close friend. The last comments are from her.
More Perfume Hoax Examples
Discuss This Story
This is something that happened to Ryan and me on the way back
from Texas last spring. I didn't think much of it until now. The
reason we were a little suspicious is we had been riding in a
jeep all day with 100 degrees temps and we stopped at a truck
stop for something to drink. When I was leaving a young girl
followed me out and asked what kind of cologne I was wearing.
Well, after 7 hours in the car sweating. I don't think you could
tell I was or was not wearing any cologne. We just got in the
jeep and said no thanks. So this does happen.
To all my female friends - It was about 3 weeks ago, I was at
the shell station in Auburn getting gas. It was about 11:30 PM.
I was approached by 2 men and 2 women in a car. The man that was
driving asked me 'What kind of perfume do you wear? I was a bit
confused and I asked him 'Why?' He said 'We are selling some name
brand perfumes, at cheap prices.' I said I had no money. He then
reached out of the car and handed me paper that was laminated; it
had many perfumes on it I looked quickly at it and gave it back.
I said, I have no money. He said it is OK, we take check, cash,
or credit cards. Then the people in the car began to laugh. I
just got in my car and said no thanks. Then I received this
e-mail yesterday, and it sent chills up my spine.
Please read this It is not joke.
Here is the e-mail! ! I was sent-
I know not all of you are women that I am sending this to, but
am hoping you will share this with your wives, daughters, mother,
sisters, etc. Our world seems to be getting crazier by the day.
Pipes bombs in mailboxes and sickos in parking lots with perfume.
Be careful. I was approached yesterday afternoon around 3:30 PM
in the Wal-Mart parking lot at University Drive in Des Moines,
by two males asking what kind of perfume I was wearing.
Then they asked if I'd like to sample some fabulous scent they
were willing to sell me at a very reasonable rate. I probably
would have agreed had I not received an email some weeks ago
warning of a 'Wanna smell this neat perfume?' scam. The men
continued to stand between parked cars, I guess to wait for
someone else to hit on. I stopped a lady going towards them,
pointing at them, and told her about how I was sent a e-mail
at work, about someone walking up to you at the malls or in
parking lots, and asking you to SNIFF PERFUME that they are
selling at a cheap price.
THIS IS NOT PERFUME...IT IS ETHER!
When you sniff it, you'll pass out. And they'll take your
wallet, your valuables, and heaven knows what else. If it
were not for this e-mail, I probably would have sniffed
the 'perfume.' But thanks to the generosity of an emailing
friend, I was spared whatever might have happened to me.
I wanted to do the same for you.
PLEASE PASS THIS ALONG TO ALL YOUR WOMEN FRIENDS, AND
PLEASE BE ALERT, AND BE AWARE. IF YOU ARE A MAN AND
RECEIVE THIS, PASS IT ON TO YOUR WOMEN FRIENDS.
Ladies this happened to me yesterday and I didn't smell
the perfume either, thanks to this email. This is true.
Believe me, I know. I was over by Big Lots in the parking
lot at lunch time when I was approached. So either day or
night, it does not matter. There were 3 guys together when
I was approached. I called the police when I got back to
Like the email says above, LET EVERYONE KNOW ABOUT THIS.
YOUR FRIENDS, FAMILY, COWORKERS, who ever. It helped me.
The first things that popped in my head was this e-mail warning.
College Degree Scam Spam
Earn a Degree based on your Life Experience? Get a Genuine
College Degree in 2 weeks? Claims like these have been turning up
in our inboxes for years. In fact, this sort of scam pre-dates
the Internet. Just pick up the phone, pay the specified fee and
your degree will be mailed to you within a few weeks. This might
sound great, but any degree or diploma procured in such a manner
is certain to be worthless. The dubious companies offering these
"qualifications" are the only ones that will reap any benefit from
If you pay the fee, you will most probably receive a seemingly
official document that might look quite impressive on the lounge
room wall. However, that will be the extent of the document's
worth. It is highly unlikely that you will land a job based on
the bogus qualifications outlined on these fake degree documents.
Employers or academia will not accept such qualifications. Even
if an employer was gullible enough to give you a job on the
strength of one of these fake degrees, you could soon find that
you did not have the necessary skills to perform the job.
The spam emails usually claim that the degrees are fully
accredited, approved or verifiable in some way and this may
actually be true at face value. Thomas Nixon explains
accreditation body itself may be bogus. In other words, the
degree you purchase may indeed be accredited. However academia or
government may not recognize the organization that offers this
"accreditation". Thus any such accreditation or approval is
likely to be meaningless.
There are no shortcuts when it comes to tertiary education. The
only way to earn a university degree is through a lot of hard
Earn a Degree based on your Life Experience
Discuss This Story
Obtain a Bachelor's, Master's, MBA, or PhD based on your present
knowledge and life experience.
No required tests, classes, or books. Confidentiality assured.
Join our fully recognized Degree Program.
Are you a truly qualified professional in your field but lack
the appropriate, recognized documentation to achieve your goals?
Or are you venturing into a new field and need a boost to get your
foot in the door so you can prove your capabilities?
Call us for information that can change your life and help you to
achieve your goals!!!
[PHONE NUMBER REMOVED] (24 hours a day)
CALL NOW TO RECEIVE YOUR DIPLOMA WITHIN 30 DAYS
Virus Report: Weekly Virus Wrap-Up
The list below represents some of the most significant new virus
threats identified by Symantec Security Response
over the last
is a worm that sends itself to email addresses
harvested from the Windows Address Book and uses a built-in SMTP
engine. It can also spread via instant messaging and file sharing
programs. The subject of infected emails will be one of the
* Email Account Information
* User Information
* Detailed Information
* URGENT PLEASE READ!
* User Info
* Server Error
* Urgent Update!
searches the infected computer for email addresses
and sends itself to them using its own SMTP engine. It can also
spread via peer-to-peer networks. The subject line of the infected
email will be one of the following:
* Do not reply to this email
* Good day
* Mail Delivery System
* Mail Transaction Failed
* Server Report
worm searches the infected computer for email
addresses and sends itself using Microsoft Outlook. It tries to
create a user account, lower security settings and modify
settings for Internet Explorer.
also uses its own SMTP engine to spread itself
to email addresses gathered from the infected computer. The
subject of infected emails will be one of the following:
* please responce
* Read this
* Have a nice day
* best regards
* re: Andrey
* re: please
* re: order
Internet Worm SMTP Engines Explained
Discuss This Story
Help Save a Nigerian Astronaut
I have seen some quite outrageous messages from Nigerian scammers
but this one takes the cake. It seems that a hapless Nigerian
astronaut has been stranded on a secret Soviet space station for
14 YEARS, no less!
Surely not even the most gullible of recipients would fall for
such a bizarre tale. This message is so absurd that it may even
be intended as a spoof of "genuine" Nigerian scam letters.
However, it must be said that Nigerian fraudsters manage to steal
millions of dollars every year from people all around the world.
In spite of the wide publicity given to Nigerian frauds, the
scammers continue to net new victims every day.
For more Nigerian Scam information and examples visit the
Hoax-Slayer Nigerian Scam pages
Subject: Nigerian Astronaut Wants To Come Home
Discuss This Story
Dr. Bakare Tunde
Astronautics Project Manager
National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA)
Garki, Abuja, FCT NIGERIA
Dear Mr. Sir,
REQUEST FOR ASSISTANCE-STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL
I am Dr. Bakare Tunde, the cousin of Nigerian Astronaut, Air
Force Major Abacha Tunde. He was the first African in space when
he made a secretflight to the Salyut 6 space station in 1979. He
was on a later Soviet spaceflight, Soyuz T-16Z to the secret
Soviet military space station Salyut 8T in 1989. He was stranded
there in 1990 when the Soviet Union was dissolved. His other
Soviet crew members returned to earth on the Soyuz T-16Z, but his
place was taken up by return cargo. There have been occasional
Progrez supply flights to keep him going since that time. He is
in good humor, but wants to come home.
In the 14-years since he has been on the station, he has
accumulated flight pay and interest amounting to almost
$ 15,000,000 American Dollars. This is held in a trust at the
Lagos National Savings and Trust Association. If we can obtain
access to this money, we can place a down payment with the Russian
Space Authorities for a Soyuz return flight to bring him back to
Earth. I am told this will cost $ 3,000,000 American Dollars. In
order to access the his trust fund we need your assistance.
Consequently, my colleagues and I are willing to transfer the
total amount to your account or subsequent disbursement, since we
as civil servants are prohibited by the Code of Conduct Bureau
(Civil Service Laws) from opening and/ or operating foreign
accounts in our names.
Needless to say, the trust reposed on you at this juncture is
enormous. In return, we have agreed to offer you 20 percent of
the transferred sum, while 10 percent shall be set aside for
incidental expenses (internal and external) between the parties
in the course of the transaction. You will be mandated to remit
the balance 70 percent to other accounts in due course.
Kindly expedite action as we are behind schedule to enable us
include downpayment in this financial quarter.
Please acknowledge the receipt of this message via my direct
number [NUMBER REMOVED] only.
Yours Sincerely, Dr. Bakare Tunde
Astronautics Project Manager
Tip of the Week: Microsoft Word Shortcuts
Microsoft Word has a lot of keyboard shortcuts that can increase
your efficiency. Here are just a few that I find particularly
Cntrl + C: Copy
Cntrl + V: Paste
Cntrl + X: Cut
Cntrl + Z: Undo
Cntrl + Y: Redo
Cntrl + S: Save
Cntrl + B: Make highlighted text Bold
Cntrl + I: Make highlighted text Italic
Cntrl + K: Insert a hyperlink
Shift + F3: Change case of highlighted text
Shift + F7: Open the thesaurus
F4: Repeat the last action
Note: Many of these keyboard shortcuts work in other programs as
**Cool Microsoft Word trick**
1. Open a blank MS Word document.
2. Enter "=rand(10,9)" without the quotes, and press the "enter"
You can alter the numbers in the round brackets to vary the
This is a documented feature
of Microsoft Word that allows
sample text to be quickly added to a document for testing
Discuss This Story
Feedback from Readers and Site Visitors
If you receive an email that you suspect is a hoax or scam, I'd
appreciate it if you would send me a copy
Popular Hoax-Slayer Articles This Week:
Nigerian Loan Scams - 419 Scam Information
Camel Spiders in Iraq Hoax Email
Tommy Hilfiger Racist Comments Hoax
ShadowCrew.com Terrorist Prank Email
One of the most widespread and enduring hoax emails in the
short history of the Internet is undoubtedly the Money From
hoax. Every week, I receive dozens of examples
of this hoax submitted from all corners of the planet. If
there was an award for "Most Forwarded Email In History"
this hoax would be among the top contenders. Unfortunately,
Mr Gates is not sharing his fortune and nobody has been
paid for forwarding this annoying email (grin).
Just a reminder that I can no longer reply to scam and
hoax enquiries via email. I am currently getting hundreds
of email enquiries a week and it has become virtually
impossible for me to answer them all. If you have a question,
please ask in the Hoax-Slayer Forums
. Also, you may find that
your question has already been answered in the Hoax-Slayer FAQ
Thank you for taking the time to submit examples of scams and
hoaxes. Your input is very much appreciated
Discuss This Story
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©Brett M. Christensen, 2008
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