Debunking email hoaxes and exposing Internet scams since 2003!

Hoax-Slayer Logo Hoax-Slayer Logo

Home    About    New Articles    RSS Feed    Subscriptions    Contact

Site Navigation


Smith Barney Phisher Scam

Email asks customers of the Smith Barney financial firm to confirm their information, ostensibly due to a "planned software upgrade".


Example:(Received from scammers, February, 2005)

This scam email aims to trick customers of the Smith Barney financial firm into revealing sensitive personal information. The email is designed to emulate an official Smith Barney message and includes the Smith Barney and Citigroup logos. Although the messages may look legitimate they do not originate from Smith Barney.

The scam message claims that customers are required to confirm their information due to a software upgrade. The entire scam email is a graphic, and clicking (accidentally or deliberately) anywhere in this graphic will open the user's default browser to a fake web page. A form on the fraudulent web page requests people to enter personal information, including card numbers and pin codes. Data entered into this bogus form may be collected by the Internet criminals running the scam.

Several different email subject lines are being used on these scam messages, including:
Smith Barney does not request sensitive information from customers via email. According to information about these fraudulent emails on the Smith Barney website:

Smith Barney will never send you an e-mail asking for your passwords, credit or debit card numbers, or other sensitive information.
If you receive one of these scam emails, do not click the message or follow any links included. Do not provide any personal information on any web page that opens as a result of clicking on links in the email. The best course of action with such emails is to simply delete them from your computer as soon as possible. You may also report scam emails to Smith Barney by phone or email.

Write-up by Brett M.Christensen