Monday, February 15, 2010

Annoying Online Promotion

Have you received an email from "President Nelson Mandela" at "S.A. 2010 WORLD CUP PROMOTION" saying you won their promotion or lottery promo and to contact "MR.OWEN DOUGLAS" to collect your winnings? It is a scam. And don't get too excited if the names are different; the scammers make many versions of this scam!
It is actually a very simple scam. They claim you won a promotion, which is giving away millions of dollars based on a randomly selected email address. The scam is obvious: it's simply preposterous to think that any company would randomly give away money to encourage you to buy their product. That would be self-defeating.
There are many other signs that this is a fraud that we have highlighted in the email below, not the least of which are:
- Email address ballot: There is no such thing as a "computer ballot system" or "computer email draw". No one, not even Microsoft has a database of email addresses of the type or magnitude they suggest.
- Terrible spelling, punctuation, syntax and grammar - Scammers apparently don't know how to use spell checkers. I assume they dropped out of school before that class. They use almost random CapItaLiZAtion and often can't even spell "February" or know that "22th" ought to be "22nd". These scammers usually write at the 3rd grade level.
- Using a free email account: The scammer is writing to you from a FREE email account (Yahoo, Hotmail, etc.). Don't you think a real organization would use its own email, its own domain and website? Wouldn't they want to promote that?
- What are they promoting? No one promotes "world peace" or "use of the internet" by handing out millions to random strangers. And if they are promoting a product, then this must be the world's worst promotion, because no one has heard of it, outside of the email you just received.
- Pay a fee to collect the prize: Nope, it is illegal for free sweepstakes and promotions to charge you ANYTHING! Of course, in a scam, that is the whole point: to get you to send money to the scammer

So if any one of you receives this kind of email asking them to be a part of the promotion, you know what to do.


Anonymous said...

Well said. Its about time people put an end to this email forwarding bullshit. It is a good tool to let people in your network know about new products, promotions etc but it annoys me when people especially smapper and internet fraudsters take advantage of situations for their benefit.

The worst thing is that they make you feel sorry for not forwarding a chain email saying if you don't, someone might not get a donation to save someone's life.

Anonymous said...; You saved my day again.

Rubick said...

Welcome back dude.I see u are back,with a vengence i hope and not for a short holiday.

BarryUno said...

Thanks Rubick. I can't promise to be here regularly but I sure as hell will try. Although I must admit, "back with a vengence"? This isn't an 80s Hollywood revenge flick dude! ;-)

Either way, check this space regularly!

As for Anon, I totally agree. The emails that get to me most, are the ones that promise to donate 5 cents to the account of some dying child in some third world country if we forward an email message. It probably worked once, a long long time ago and I am pretty sure the same companies wouldn't be stupid to try it again. It's plain absurd!

Snoopy said...

That stuff was interesting about a decade ago but now it is just a nuisance. How many people are we supposed to save from diseases or misfortunes? Besides, I am sure the people that really need the help have other ways of gathering funds.