Softpanorama

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News Recommended Links Frequently asked question (FAQs) Podesta emails hack Ebay Identity Theft Scam Postal Forwarding Scam

Porno Webmaster
/money laundering Scam

InstaKiss password-stealing scam Friend Greetings Spam Trojan

BONZI’s Scams ("Your computer is broadcasting an internet IP Address" , 'Your internet connection is not optimized ...'" )

  Fake eBay Escrow sites Con artists troll for patriotic consumers Bank Account Deactivation scams
Payroll transfer scam Bank loan spams Hijacked Identity Problem   Electronic Greeting Card Scam Humor Etc

Judging from the stream of e-mail scams delivered to Softpanorama mail boxes it looks like two largest growing categories of scams are attempts to lure the user into revealing his financial account information (identity fraud) or infecting the computer with Spyware and/or viruses. This page is maintained episodically as we get another scam in our mailboxes, so you probably should try to get a more recent information from more specialized sites. 

A scam email usually contains links just clicking on which in case your email client is outlook and is not patched can lead to undesired consequences. If you are using Outlook think twice before clicking on any link in suspicious e-mails. Do not download and install any component or plug-in even if the site is suggesting it is necessary to view the content of email. Typical scams include Gator  As of April 2002, Gator has been implicated in a questionable practice some are calling "drive-by-downloads". In this scheme, a normal banner or popup ad will attempt to install software (executable code) on the user's PC. Depending on the browser's security settings, the software will either download silently and without any user action, or present an install dialogue. Novice users may choose "Yes" thinking the browser is asking to download a legitimate page-display plug-in. Ben Edelman, a Student Fellow at the Harvard Law School, has performed detailed analysis of the Gator/GAIN software as part of a pending legal case between Gator and sites it displays competitors' advertising on.

Always question Internet promotions and e-mail that came from strangers, including electronic greeting cards.
If promotions are too good to be true, they probably are. In case of electronic greetings cards, always verify pertinent information (e.g. check if the site is legitimate or a bogus, never accept greeting cards from domains other than large legitimate free greeting cards services like Yahoo! Greetings or Hallmark Greeting Cards; in case you encounter another you should check it using some list of reputable vendors, for example FreebieList.com Free Digital Postcards and Electronic Greetings).

Do not respond to the deceptive Web or email advertising. Deceptive advertising is illegal. "A nationwide class action lawsuit was filed on November 25, 2002, in the Superior Court of Spokane County against Bonzi Software, Inc. Bonzi is among the world’s most prolific issuers of internet advertising banners. Their ads are highly misleading. See some samples. It is Bonzi, which is responsible for those irritating popup ads which say things like 'Your computer is broadcasting an internet IP Address...' and 'Your internet connection is not optimized ...'"

In no way you should disclose any personal information in e-mail or in the Internet form that was send by email (this scam is called phishing, see for example Bank Account Deactivation scams, or  Bank loan spam); In all such ceases email contains a form that the user needs to fill.  If e-mail contain a form it is usually a bogus: reputable providers never send e-mail forms to customers. The form usually contains sensitive personal data need to withdraw money from the account. The recent scam of this kind pretends to be from corporate payroll and it asks you where they need to transfer your next paycheck.

Security and trust are major issues for e-commerce users should be especially vigilant about Internet fraud and identity theft over the Christmas period. See for example Ebay identity theft scam below

Internet scam letters are usually customized (often with the user name in the body of the message). That makes them pretty close to normal business correspondence and thus they are not filtered by the spam filter. 

Internet scam letters are usually customized
and thus are not always filtered by the spam filter.

Phishing ("Password fishing") is the use of  spam to lure people to fake Web sites that imitate those of reputable companies, and deceive them into divulging personal data usually credit card information.


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[Oct 21, 2017] 5 phishing scams you need to be aware of

Oct 21, 2017 | www.msn.com

Your account has been disabled or suspended

This arrives as an email or text that claims a user's account has been or will be locked, disabled or will expire and asks for login credentials.

A very recent example is an Apple text/email phishing scam that states: "Your Apple ID is due to expire today." This is one of the more sophisticated scams since it contains no glaring grammatical or spelling errors, a frequent failing of scams.

AppleID's do not "expire" and the malicious URL, in the case, does not point to a real Apple domain.

Irregular or fraudulent activity detected

This scam poses as a "security" update. The scammer will claim fraudulent activity has been detected on your account or your account has been subjected to a "compulsory 'security update' and you need to login to enable this security update," Symantec, an Internet security company, told Fox News.

Tip: If a login link is provided, it's invariably a scam.

Online retailer scams

With the holiday season just around the corner, these scams have the potential to be effective because they can appear as relatively innocuous and appeal to greed rather than fear.

One that has increased over time is fake orders associated with Amazon. "If you received correspondence regarding an order you didn't place, it likely wasn't from Amazon.com," the tech giant wrote on a customer-help page on its website .

Fake pop-ups

While not technically phishing, fake pop-ups are an old trick and still widespread.

The ultimate net effect can be similar to phishing if the scammer gets you, in the end, to provide sensitive information.

"The scammer will typically attempt to get the victim to allow remote access to their computer," said Malwaretips. "After remote access is gained...the scammer relies on confidence tricks...in order to gain the victim's trust to pay for the supposed 'support' services, when the scammer actually steals the victim's credit card account information."

Taxes

While not necessarily one of the largest scams, one that is increasing in popularity is tax-themed phishing.

Themes range from updating your filing information to IRS warnings that you owe money. "One thing that's for sure is that the IRS doesn't communicate via email or text message, they still send snail mail," Symantec told Fox News.

For detailed information on email security threats, see this Symantec Internet Security Threat report issued this month.

[Nov 06, 2016] The Podesta Emails - Undeniable proof that the lobbyists wanted to put Bernie out

Notable quotes:
"... WikiLeaks series on deals involving Hillary Clinton campaign Chairman John Podesta. Mr Podesta is a long-term associate of the Clintons and was President Bill Clinton's Chief of Staff from 1998 until 2001. Mr Podesta also owns the Podesta Group with his brother Tony, a major lobbying firm and is the Chair of the Center for American Progress (CAP), a Washington DC-based think tank. ..."
"... if President Obama signs this terrible legislation that blatantly validates Bernie's entire campaign message about Wall Street running our government, this will give Bernie a huge boost and 10,000 -20,000 outraged citizens (who WILL turn up because they will be so angry at the President for preemption vt) will be marching on the Mall with Bernie as their keynote speaker. " ..."
"... But Hirshberg does not stop here. In order to persuade Podesta about the seriousness of the matter, he claims that " It will be terrible to hand Sanders this advantage at such a fragile time when we really need to save our $$$ for the Trump fight. " ..."
Nov 06, 2016 | failedevolution.blogspot.gr
WikiLeaks series on deals involving Hillary Clinton campaign Chairman John Podesta. Mr Podesta is a long-term associate of the Clintons and was President Bill Clinton's Chief of Staff from 1998 until 2001. Mr Podesta also owns the Podesta Group with his brother Tony, a major lobbying firm and is the Chair of the Center for American Progress (CAP), a Washington DC-based think tank.

An email from Gary Hirshberg, chairman and former president and CEO of Stonyfield Farm , to John Podesta on March 13, 2016, confirms why the lobbyists strongly opposed Bernie Sanders.

Hirshberg writes to a familiar person, as he was mentioned at the time as a possible 2008 Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate, requesting Obama should not pass the Roberts bill because " if President Obama signs this terrible legislation that blatantly validates Bernie's entire campaign message about Wall Street running our government, this will give Bernie a huge boost and 10,000 -20,000 outraged citizens (who WILL turn up because they will be so angry at the President for preemption vt) will be marching on the Mall with Bernie as their keynote speaker. "

But Hirshberg does not stop here. In order to persuade Podesta about the seriousness of the matter, he claims that " It will be terrible to hand Sanders this advantage at such a fragile time when we really need to save our $$$ for the Trump fight. "

[Nov 04, 2016] the Podesta emails show compete corruption of democratic party

Notable quotes:
"... The emails currently roiling the US presidential campaign are part of some unknown digital collection amassed by the troublesome Anthony Weiner, but if your purpose is to understand the clique of people who dominate Washington today, the emails that really matter are the ones being slowly released by WikiLeaks from the hacked account of Hillary Clinton's campaign chair John Podesta. ..."
Nov 04, 2016 | www.theguardian.com

The emails currently roiling the US presidential campaign are part of some unknown digital collection amassed by the troublesome Anthony Weiner, but if your purpose is to understand the clique of people who dominate Washington today, the emails that really matter are the ones being slowly released by WikiLeaks from the hacked account of Hillary Clinton's campaign chair John Podesta. They are last week's scandal in a year running over with scandals, but in truth their significance goes far beyond mere scandal: they are a window into the soul of the Democratic party and into the dreams and thoughts of the class to whom the party answers.

The class to which I refer is not rising in angry protest; they are by and large pretty satisfied, pretty contented. Nobody takes road trips to exotic West Virginia to see what the members of this class looks like or how they live; on the contrary, they are the ones for whom such stories are written. This bunch doesn't have to make do with a comb-over TV mountebank for a leader; for this class, the choices are always pretty good, and this year they happen to be excellent.

They are the comfortable and well-educated mainstay of our modern Democratic party. They are also the grandees of our national media; the architects of our software; the designers of our streets; the high officials of our banking system; the authors of just about every plan to fix social security or fine-tune the Middle East with precision droning. They are, they think, not a class at all but rather the enlightened ones, the people who must be answered to but who need never explain themselves.

[Nov 03, 2016] John Podesta and Mook conspiring to commit money laundering

Nov 03, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

oho November 3, 2016 at 3:03 pm

John Podesta + Mook conspiring to commit money laundering. Not hyperbole.

https://mobile.twitter.com/wikileaks/status/794236216681992192/photo/1

Portia November 3, 2016 at 3:06 pm

3k/mo ok for you?

why yes

[Nov 03, 2016] Off The Record dinner at Podestas with reporters covering Clinton

Notable quotes:
"... Hillary wouldn't even be close if the press weren't in the tank for her ..."
Nov 03, 2016 | www.zerohedge.com

JackMeOff Nov 3, 2016 9:37 AM

Off The Record dinner at Podesta's with reporters covering Clinton:

https://wikileaks.org/podesta-emails/emailid/43604

The goals of the dinner include:

(1) Getting to know the reporters most closely c overing HRC and getting them comfortable with team HRC

(2) Setting expectations for the announcement and launch period

(3) Framing the HRC message and framing the race

(4) Demystifying key players on HRC's campaign team

(5) Having fun and enjoying good cooking

I am a Man I am... JackMeOff Nov 3, 2016 10:01 AM ,
REPORTERS RSVP (28) 1. ABC – Liz Kreutz 2. AP – Julie Pace 3. AP - Ken Thomas 4. AP - Lisa Lerer 5. Bloomberg - Jennifer Epstein 6. Buzzfeed - Ruby Cramer 7. CBS – Steve Chagaris 8. CNBC - John Harwood 9. CNN - Dan Merica 10. Huffington Post - Amanda Terkel 11. LAT - Evan Handler 12. McClatchy - Anita Kumar 13. MSNBC - Alex Seitz-Wald 14. National Journal - Emily Schultheis 15. NBC – Mark Murray 16. NPR - Mara Liassion 17. NPR – Tamara Keith 18. NYT - Amy Chozik 19. NYT - Maggie Haberman 20. Politico - Annie Karni 21. Politico - Gabe Debenedetti 22. Politico - Glenn Thrush 23. Reuters - Amanda Becker 24. Washington Post - Anne Gearan 25. Washington Post – Phil Rucker 26. WSJ - Colleen McCain Nelson 27. WSJ - Laura Meckler 28. WSJ - Peter Nicholas

Pigeon •Nov 3, 2016 9:49 AM

It bothers me these stories are constantly prefaced with the idea that Wikileaks is saving Trump's bacon. Hillary wouldn't even be close if the press weren't in the tank for her. How about Wikileaks evening the playing field with REAL STORIES AND FACTS?

[Oct 30, 2016] Speaking also of Pedesta email it is interesting that it was Podesta who make mistake of assessing phishing email link, probably accidentally

turcopolier.typepad.com

mistah charley, ph.d. said... 30 October 2016 at 09:13 AM

Speaking also of Podesta's email, not Huma's, the following is interesting:

http://www.cnn.com/2016/10/28/politics/phishing-email-hack-john-podesta-hillary-clinton-wikileaks/index.html

Briefly, it seems Podesta received an email "You need to change your password", asked for professional advice from his staff if it was legit, was told "Yes, you DO need to change your password", but then clicked on the link in the original email, which was sent him with malicious intent, as he suspected at first and then was inappropriately reassured about - rather than on the link sent him by the IT staffer.

Result - the "phishing" email got his password info, and the world now gets to see all his emails.

Personally, my hope is that Huma and HRC will be pardoned for all their crimes, by Obama, before he leaves office.

Then I hope that Huma's divorce will go through, and that once Hillary is sworn in she will at last be courageous enough to divorce Bill (who actually performed the Huma-Anthony Weiner nuptials - you don't have to make these things up).

Then it could happen that the first same-sex marriage will be performed in the White House, probably by the minister of DC's Foundry United Methodist Church, which has a policy of LBGQT equality. Or maybe Hillary, cautious and middle-of-the-road as usual, will go to Foundry UMC sanctuary for the ceremony, recognizing that some Americans' sensibilities would be offended by having the rite in the White House.

As Nobel Laureate Bob Dylan wrote, "Love is all there is, it makes the world go round, love and only love, it can't be denied. No matter what you think about it, you just can't live without it, take a tip from one who's tried."

[Oct 29, 2016] Sometimes Bill And Hillary Have The Worst Judgment Wikileaks Releases Part 22 Of Podesta File

Notable quotes:
"... and concludes by saying that " Sometimes HRC/WJC have the worst judgement ." In retrospect, she is right. ..."
Oct 29, 2016 | www.zerohedge.com
In the aftermath of one of the most memorable (c)october shocks in presidential campaign history, Wikileaks continues its ongoing broadside attack against the Clinton campaign with the relentless Podesta dump, by unveiling another 596 emails in the latest Part 22 of its Podesta release, bringing the total emails released so far to exactly 36,190, leaving less than 30% of the total dump left to go.

RELEASE: The Podesta Emails Part 22 #PodestaEmails #PodestaEmails22 #HillaryClinton https://t.co/wzxeh70oUm pic.twitter.com/QnWewcpPbf

- WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 29, 2016

As usual we will go parse through the disclosure and bring you some of the more notable ones.

* * *

In a February 2012 email from Chelsea Clinton's NYU alias, aj66@nyu.edu , to Podesta and Mills, Bill and Hillary's frustrated daughter once again points out the "frustration and confusion" among Clinton Foundation clients in the aftermath of the previously noted scandals plaguing the Clinton consultancy, Teneo:

Over the past few days a few people from the Foundation have reached out to me frustrated or upset about _____ (fill in the blank largely derived meetings Friday or Monday). I've responded to all w/ essentially the following (ie disintermediating myself, again, emphatically) below. I also called my Dad last night to tell him of my explicit non-involvement and pushing all back to you both and to him as I think that is indeed the right answer. Thanks

Sample: Please share any and all concerns, with examples, without pulling punches, with John and Cheryl as appropriate and also if you feel very strongly with my Dad directly. Transitions are always challenging and to get to the right answer its critical that voices are heard and understood, and in the most direct way - ie to them without intermediation. Particularly in an effort to move more toward a professionalism and efficiency at the Foundation and for my father - and they're the decision-makers, my Dad most of all

* * *

A February 2015 email from Neera Tanden lashes out at David Brock of the Bonner Group, profiled in this post: " Money Laundering Scheme Exposed: 14 Pro-Clinton Super PACs & Non-Profits Implicated ." As a reminder, the Bonner Group, as we showed last month, may be a money laundering front involving various SuperPACs and non-profit institutions:

In the email Tanden says that:

"Brock/Bonner are a nightmare: Really, Suzie Buell isn't giving to the superpac? I wonder how that got in this story " Big donors holding off making pledges to pro-Hillary Clinton super PAC ",

and concludes by saying that " Sometimes HRC/WJC have the worst judgement ." In retrospect, she is right.

* * *

Speaking of "donor advisor" Mary Pat Bonner , the following email from March 2009 hints at potential impropriety in shifting money from one democratic donor group to another, the Center for American Progress :

I have moved all the sussman money from unity '09 to cap and am reviewing the others . I will assess it and keep you informed

Something else for the DOJ to look into after the elections, perhaps?

* * *

And then there is this email from August 2015 in which German politician Michael Werz advises John Podesta that Turkish president Erdogan "is making substantial investments in U.S. to counter opposition (CHP, Kurds, Gulenists etc.) outreach to policymakers" and the US Government.

John, heard this second hand but more than once. Seems Erdogan faction is making substantial investments in U.S. to counter opposition (CHP, Kurds, Gulenists etc.) outreach to policymakers and USG. Am told that the Erdogan crew also tries to make inroads via donations to Democratic candidates, including yours. Two names that you should be aware of are *Mehmet Celebi* and *Ali Cinar*. Happy to elaborate on the phone, provided you are not shopping at the liquor store.

The email :

This should perhaps explain why the US has so far done absolutely nothing to halt Erdogan's unprecedented crackdown on "coup plotters" which has seen as many as 100,000 workers lose their jobs, be arrested, or otherwise removed from Erdogan's political opposition.

[Oct 29, 2016] Phishing for Fools, Hipster Edition

Oct 29, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
allan October 28, 2016 at 10:19 pm

Phishing for Fools, Hipster Edition:

Emails show how Clinton campaign chairman apparently hacked [AP]

New evidence appears to show how hackers earlier this year stole more than 50,000 emails of Hillary Clinton's campaign chairman, an audacious electronic attack blamed on Russia's government and one that has resulted in embarrassing political disclosures about Democrats in the final weeks before the U.S. presidential election.

The hackers sent John Podesta an official-looking email on Saturday, March 19, that appeared to come from Google. It warned that someone in Ukraine had obtained Podesta's personal Gmail password and tried unsuccessfully to log in, and it directed him to a website where he should "change your password immediately."

Podesta's chief of staff, Sara Latham, forwarded the email to the operations help desk of Clinton's campaign, where staffer Charles Delavan in Brooklyn, New York, wrote back 25 minutes later, "This is a legitimate email. John needs to change his password immediately."

But the email was not authentic. …

Lambert Strether Post author October 29, 2016 at 12:49 am

And if the ploy was that low-grade, that means that the Russki superbrains in the KGB didn't have to be behind it. Dear Lord.

This really is a hubris followed by nemesis thing, isn't it? And how sad it is, how tragic, that it was Brooklyn that brought Podesta down. Somehow I think Delavan is going to have a hard time getting a job in politics again, but he did the country a great service.

TheCatSaid October 29, 2016 at 1:17 pm

Social engineering wins again. This was something I learned about long ago when Black Box Voting.org started (approx. 2004). It was one of the many vulnerabilities in various points of election systems, both with paper and paperless. Very easy to get officials to reveal passwords that allowed access–that's in addition to the corruption situations. (Or rather, the social engineering angle would be just one of the tools used by insiders.)

[Oct 26, 2016] Over-sampling issue in Podesta emails

Notable quotes:
"... The simplest explanation is usually best. All the indicators, especially the support of the donor class, elites of all kinds etc. points towards a Democratic victory, perhaps a very strong victory if the poll numbers last weekend translate into electoral college numbers. ..."
crookedtimber.org

kidneystones 10.25.16 at 11:07 am ( 55 )

I stopped by to check if my comment had cleared moderation. What follows is a more thorough examination (not my own, entirely) on Corey's point 1, and some data that may point towards a much narrower race than we're led to believe.

The leaked emails from one Democratic super-pac, the over-sampling I cited at zerohedge (@13o) is part of a two-step process involving over-sampling of Democrats in polls combined with high frequency polling. The point being to encourage media to promote the idea that the race is already over. We saw quite a bit of this last weekend. Let's say the leaked emails are reliable.

This suggests to me two things: first – the obvious, the race is much closer than the polls indicated, certainly the poll cited by Corey in the OP. Corey questioned the validity of this poll, at least obliquely. Second, at least one super-pac working with the campaign sees the need to depress Trump turn-out. The first point is the clearest and the most important – the polls, some at least, are intentionally tilted to support a 'Hillary wins easily' narrative. The second allows for some possibly useful speculation regarding the Clinton campaigns confidence in their own GOTV success.

The simplest explanation is usually best. All the indicators, especially the support of the donor class, elites of all kinds etc. points towards a Democratic victory, perhaps a very strong victory if the poll numbers last weekend translate into electoral college numbers.

That's a big if. I suggest Hillary continues to lead but by much smaller margins in key states. It's also useful to point out that Trump's support in traditionally GOP states may well be equally shaky.

And that really is it from me on this topic barring a double digit swing to Hillary in the LA Times poll that has the race at dead even.

Layman 10.25.16 at 11:31 am

kidneystones:

"The leaked emails from one Democratic super-pac, the over-sampling I cited at zerohedge (@13o) is part of a two-step process involving over-sampling of Democrats in polls combined with high frequency polling."

Excellent analysis, only the email in question is eight years old. And it refers to a request for internal polling done by the campaign. And it suggests over-sampling of particular demographics so the campaign could better assess attitudes among those demographics.

And this is a completely normal practice which has nothing to do with the polling carried out by independent third parties (e.g. Gallup, Ipsos, etc) for the purposes of gauging and reporting to the public the state of the race.

And when pollsters to over-sample, the over-sampling is used for analysis but is not reflected in the top-line poll results.

[Oct 19, 2016] Wikileaks Releases Another 1803 Podesta Emails In Part 12 Of Data Dump; Total Is Now 18953

Notable quotes:
"... Among the initial emails to stand out is this extensive exchange showing just how intimiately the narrative of Hillary's server had been coached. The following September 2015 email exchange between Podesta and Nick Merrill, framed the "core language" to be used in response to questions Clinton could be asked about her email server, and the decision to "bleach" emails from it. The emails contain long and short versions of responses for Clinton. ..."
Oct 19, 2016 | www.zerohedge.com
The daily dump continues. In the now traditional daily routine, one which forces the Clinton campaign to resort to ever more stark sexual scandals involving Trump to provide a media distraction, moments ago Wikileaks released yet another 1,803 emails in Part 12 of its ongoing Podesta Email dump, which brings the total number of released emails to 18,953.

RELEASE: The Podesta Emails Part 12 https://t.co/wzxeh70oUm #HillaryClinton #imWithHer #PodestaEmails #PodestaEmails12 pic.twitter.com/druf7WQXD5

- WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 19, 2016

As a reminder among the most recent revelations we got further insights into Hillary's desire to see Obamacare " unravel" , her contempt for "doofus" Bernie Sanders, staff exchanges on handling media queries about Clinton "flip-flopping" on gay marriage, galvanizing Latino support and locking down Clinton's healthcare policy. Just as notable has been the ongoing revelation of just how "captured" the so-called independent press has been in its "off the record" discussions with John Podesta which got the head Politico correspondent, Glenn Thrush, to admit he is a "hack" for allowing Podesta to dictate the content of his article.

The release comes on the day of the third and final presidential campaign between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, and as a result we are confident it will be scrutinized especially carefully for any last minute clues that would allow Trump to lob a much needed Hail Mary to boost his standing in the polls.

As there is a total of 50,000 emails, Wikileaks will keep the media busy over the next three weeks until the elections with another 30,000 emails still expected to be released.

* * *

Among the initial emails to stand out is this extensive exchange showing just how intimiately the narrative of Hillary's server had been coached. The following September 2015 email exchange between Podesta and Nick Merrill, framed the "core language" to be used in response to questions Clinton could be asked about her email server, and the decision to "bleach" emails from it. The emails contain long and short versions of responses for Clinton.

"Because the government already had everything that was work-related, and my personal emails were just that – personal – I didn't see a reason to keep them so I asked that they be deleted, and that's what the company that managed my server did. And we notified Congress of that back in March"

She was then presented with the following hypothetical scenario:

* "Why won't you say whether you wiped it?"

"After we went through the process to determine what was work related and what was not and provided the work related emails to State, I decided not to keep the personal ones."

"We saved the work-related ones on a thumb drive that is now with the Department of Justice. And as I said in March, I chose not to keep the personal ones. I asked that they be deleted, how that happened was up to the company that managed the server. And they are cooperating fully with anyone that has questions."

* * *

Another notable email reveals the close relationship between the Clinton Foundation and Ukraine billionaire Victor Pinchuk, a prominent donor to the Clinton Foundation , in which we see the latter's attempt to get a meeting with Bill Clinton to show support for Ukraine:

From: Tina Flournoy < Tina@presidentclinton.com >
Sent: Monday, March 30, 2015 9:58:55 AM
To: Amitabh Desai
Cc: Jon Davidson; Margaret Steenburg; Jake Sullivan; Dan Schwerin; Huma Abedin; John Podesta
Subject: Re: Victor Pinchuk

Team HRC - we'll get back to you on this

> On Mar 30, 2015, at 9:53 AM, Amitabh Desai < ami@presidentclinton.com > wrote:
>
> Victor Pinchuk is relentlessly following up (including this morning) about a meeting with WJC in London or anywhere in Europe. Ideally he wants to bring together a few western leaders to show support for Ukraine, with WJC probably their most important participant. If that's not palatable for us, then he'd like a bilat with WJC.
>
> If it's not next week, that's fine, but he wants a date. I keep saying we have no Europe plans, although we do have those events in London in June. Are folks comfortable offering Victor a private meeting on one of those dates? At this point I get the impression that although I keep saying WJC cares about Ukraine, Pinchuk feels like WJC hasn't taken enough action to demonstrate that, particularly during this existential moment for the county and for him.
>
> I sense this is so important because Pinchuk is under Putin's heel right now, feeling a great degree of pressure and pain for his many years of nurturing stronger ties with the West.
>
> I get all the downsides and share the concerns. I am happy to go back and say no. It would just be good to know what WJC (and HRC and you all) would like to do, because this will likely impact the future of this relationship, and slow walking our reply will only reinforce his growing angst.
>
> Thanks, and sorry for the glum note on a Monday morning...

* * *

We find more evidence of media coordination with Politico's Glenn Thrush who has an off the record question to make sure he is not "fucking anything up":

From: john.podesta@gmail.com
To: gthrush@politico.com
Date: 2015-04-30 17:06
Subject: Re: sorry to bother...

Sure. Sorry for the delay I was on a plane.
On Apr 30, 2015 9:44 AM, "Glenn Thrush" < gthrush@politico.com > wrote:

> Can I send u a couple of grafs, OTR, to make sure I'm not fucking
> anything up?

* * *

Another notable moment emerges in the emails, involving Hillary Clinton's selective memory. Clinton's description of herself as a moderate Democrat at a September 2015 event in Ohio caused an uproar amongst her team. In a mail from Clinton advisor Neera Tanden to Podesta in the days following the comment she asks why she said this.

"I pushed her on this on Sunday night. She claims she didn't remember saying it. Not sure I believe her," Podesta replies. Tanden insists that the comment has made her job more difficult after "telling every reporter I know she's actually progressive". " It worries me more that she doesn't seem to know what planet we are all living in at the moment ," she adds.

* * *

We also get additional insight into Clinton courting the Latino minority. A November 2008 email from Federico Peña , who was on the Obama-Biden transition team, called for a "Latino media person" to be added to the list of staff to appeal to Latino voters. Federico de Jesus or Vince Casillas are seen as ideal candidates, both of whom were working in the Chicago operations.

"More importantly, it would helpful (sic) to Barack to do pro-active outreach to Latino media across the country to get our positive message out before people start spreading negative rumors," Peña writes.

* * *

Another email between Clinton's foreign policy adviser Jake Sullivan and Tanden from March 2016 discussed how it was "REALLY dicey territory" for Clinton to comment on strengthening "bribery laws to ensure that politicians don't change legislation for political donations." Tanden agrees with Sullivan:

" She may be so tainted she's really vulnerable - if so, maybe a message of I've seen how this sausage is made, it needs to stop, I'm going to stop it will actually work."

* * *

One email suggested, sarcastically, to kneecap bernie Sanders : Clinton's team issued advise regarding her tactics for the "make or break" Democratic presidential debate with Sanders in Milwaukee on February 11, 2016. The mail to Podesta came from Philip Munger, a Democratic Party donor. He sent the mail using an encrypted anonymous email service.

"She's going to have to kneecap him. She is going to have to take him down from his morally superior perch. She has done so tentatively. She must go further," he says.

Clearly, the desire to get Sanders' supporters was a key imperative for the Clinton campaign. In a September 2015 email to Podesta , Hill columnist Brent Budowsky criticized the campaign for allegedly giving Clinton surrogates talking points to attack Bernie Sanders. "I cannot think of anything more stupid and self-destructive for a campaign to do," he says. "Especially for a candidate who has dangerously low levels of public trust," and in light of Sanders' campaign being based on "cleaning up politics."

Budowsky warns voters would be "disgusted" by attacks against Sanders and says he wouldn't discourage Podesta from sharing the note with Clinton because "if she wants to become president she needs to understand the point I am making with crystal clarity."

"Make love to Bernie and his idealistic supporters, and co-opt as many of his progressive issues as possible."

Budowsky then adds that he was at a Washington university where " not one student gave enough of a damn for Hillary to open a booth, or even wear a Hillary button. "

* * *

One email focused on how to address with the topic of the TPP. National Policy Director for Hillary for America Amanda Renteria explains, "The goal here was to minimize our vulnerability to the authenticity attack and not piss off the WH any more than necessary."

Democratic pollster Joel Benenson says, "the reality is HRC is more pro trade than anti and trying to turn her into something she is not could reinforce our negative [sic] around authenticity. This is an agreement that she pushed for and largely advocated for."

* * *

While claiming she is part of the people, an email exposes Hillary as being " part of the system ." Clinton's team acknowledges she is "part of the system" in an email regarding her strategies. As Stan Greenberg told Podesta:

" We are also going to test some messages that include acknowledgement of being part of the system, and know how much has to change ,"

* * *

Some more on the topic of Hillary being extensively coached and all her words rehearsed, we find an email which reveals that Clinton's words have to be tightly managed by her team who are wary of what she might say. After the Iowa Democratic Party's presidential debate in November 2015 adviser Ron Klain mails Podesta to say, "If she says something three times as an aside during practice (Wall Street supports me due to 9/11), we need to assume she will say it in the debate, and tell her not to do so." Klain's mail reveals Sanders was their biggest fear in the debate. "The only thing that would have been awful – a Sanders break out – didn't happen. So all in all, we were fine," he says.

The mail also reveals Klain's role in securing his daughter Hannah a position on Clinton's team. "I'm not asking anyone to make a job, or put her in some place where she isn't wanted – it just needs a nudge over the finish line," Klain says. Hannah Klain worked on Clinton's Surrogates team for nine months commencing in the month after her father's mail to Podesta, according to her Linkedin.

CuttingEdge X_in_Sweden Oct 19, 2016 9:18 AM

Is Podesta authorised to be privy to confidential information?

Only Hillary sends him a 9-point assessment of the ME with this at the top:

Note: Sources include Western intelligence, US intelligence and sources in the region.

I would assume Intelligence Services intel based assessments would be a bit confidential, Mr Comey? Given their source? Nothing to see here, you say?

Fuck Me.

https://www.wikileaks.org/podesta-emails/emailid/18917

Bubba Rum Das samjam7 Oct 19, 2016 9:02 AM

I love this...Assange is incommunicado, yet the data dumps keep coming!
Horse face looks like such a fool to the world as a result; & due to John Kerry's stupidity which is drawing major attention to the whole matter; Americans are finally beginning to wake up & pay attention to this shit!

Looks like the Hitlery for Prez ship is starting to take on MASSIVE amounts of water!

I believe they are beyond the point where any more news of 'pussy grabbing' will save them from themselves (and Mr. Assange)!

Oh, yeah...-And THANK YOU, MR. O'KEEFE!

css1971 Oct 19, 2016 9:04 AM

Dems!! Dems!! Where are you. You need 2 more bimbos to accuse Trump of looking at them!!

DEMS you need to get that nose to the grindstone!!

Hobbleknee GunnerySgtHartman Oct 19, 2016 8:48 AM

Fox is controlled opposition. They dropped the interview with O'Keefe after he released the latest undercover report on Democrat voter fraud.

JackMeOff Oct 19, 2016 10:16 AM

Wonder what "docs" they are referring?

https://wikileaks.org/podesta-emails/emailid/17978

monad Oct 19, 2016 1:14 PM The FBI had no difficulty convicting Obugger's crony Rod Blagegovitch.

The new lowered expectations federal government just expects to get lucre + bennies for sitting on their asses and holding the door for gangsters. Traitors. Spies. Enemies foreign and domestic. Amphisbaegenic pot boiling.

california chrome Oct 19, 2016 11:03 AM

With Creamer's tricks effective in Obama's re-election, it now makes sense why Obama was so confident when he said Trump would never be president.

Trump is still ahead in the only poll I track. But i conduct my own personal poll on a daily basis and loads of Trump supporters are in the closet and won't come out until they pull the lever for Trump on election day.

http://graphics.latimes.com/usc-presidential-poll-dashboard/

whatamaroon Oct 19, 2016 1:04 PM https://pageshot.net/qLjtSLje2gBJ1Mlp/twitter.com ,

This supposedly directly implicates Podesta and voter fraud. If it will open here

[Dec 27, 2008] Congratulations!!! Reference Number: BMW/2551256003/23

Subject: Congratulations!!! Reference Number: BMW/2551256003/23
From: THE BMW AUTOMOBILE COMPANY 
Date: Sat, 27 Dec 2008 16:10:46 -0800
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THE INTERNATIONAL AWARENESS 
PROMOTION DEPARTMENT OF 
THE BMW AUTOMOBILE COMPANY.
22 Garden Close, Stamford,
Lincs, PE9 2YP, London
United Kingdom. 
Reference Number: BMW/2551256003/23

Congratulations!!! 
     The Board of Directors, members of staff and the International
Awareness Promotion Department of the BMW Automobile Company, wishes to
congratulate you on your success as the STAR PRIZE WINNER in this end of of
year BMW Automobile International Awareness Promotion (IAP)held in London,
England. 
     This makes you the proud owner of a brand new BMW 2008 X6 35i
M(2008 moden) and a cash prize of Ј,750,000.00 GBP.The car comes with a 
special BMW Insurance Cover for one whole year, that is, till the next 
promotion in 2009.It also comes with a one year warranty and FREE repairs at
any BMW AUTOMOBILE depot or service station worldwide.
DESCRIPTION OF PRIZE VEHICLE.
         
YEAR: 2008 
MODEL: 2008 X6 35i Sport Saloon
     The selection process was carried out through random selection in our 
Computerized Email Selection System(C.E.S.S.)from a database of over a million
email addresses from the world wide web drawn from all the continents of the 
world.For you to collect your prizes,kindly contact Barrister Anis Rahman
through email,stating your receipt of this notification.He has been mandated to
offer you legal assistance and fascilitate the urgent delivery of your prizes
directly to you.
The Chambers of Anis Rahman
Direct Public Access Barrister
Commissioner for Oaths
1st Floor
8 - 10 Greatorex Street 
London E1 5NF 
EMAIL: bmwprizeclaimcenter@live.com
1. FULL NAME: 
2. SEX:
3. AGE:
4. NATIONALITY:
5. RESIDENCIAL ADDRESS:
6. CITY:
7. STATE:
8. ZIP CODE:
9. OCCUPATION / POSITION HELD:
10. PHONE NUMBER:
11. FAX:
12. EMAIL ADDRESS:
Congratulations once more, and keep trusting BMW Automobile for top quality 
automobiles. 
Engr. Thorbjorn Andersson
DIRECTOR OF PROMOTIONS,
INTERNATIONAL AWARENESS PROMOTIONS,
BMW AUTOMOBILE.
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM.

[Dec 19, 2008] FedEx Courier Service

Subject:
From: FedEx Courier Service 
Date: Fri, 19 Dec 2008 17:40:35 +0100 (CET)
:
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FEDEX COURIER SERVICE,
EDO STATE,NIGERIA
WEST AFRICA.
19th-12-2008.

Dear Customer!
SHIPMENT CODE: CPEL/OWN/9856
PARCEL #: EG2272

We have been waiting for you to contact us regarding the delivery of your
package to you. We assumed that our contact details was given to you by
Heineken.The content of your package itself is a Bank Draft worth of
$800,00.00USD.The package is registered with us for mailing by Heineken,
We are sending you this email because your package has been registered on a
Special Order.

What you have to do now, is to send us your residential address.Note that as
soon as we confirms your information, it will take only two working day
(48 hours) for your package to be delivered to you. For your
information,the VAT & Shipping charges as well as Insurance fees have been
paid by Heineken before your package was registered.Also note that the
payment that is made on the Insurance, Premium & Clearance Certificates,
are to certify that the Bank Draft is not a Drug Affiliated Fund (DAF)
neither is it funds to sponsor Terrorism in your country. This will help
you avoid any form of query from the Monetary Authority of your country.

However, you will have to pay a sum of  ($160.00USD) to the FedEx Delivery
Department being full payment for the Security Keeping Fee of the FedEx
company as stated in our privacy terms & condition page. Also be informed
that Heineken would have paid for the Security Keeping fee,but we do not
accept such payment considering the facts that all items & packages that
is registered with us have a time limitation and we cannot accept payment
not knowing when you will be picking up the package or even responding to
us.So we cannot take the risk to have accepted such payment in case of any
possible demurrage.

Kindly note that Heineken did not leave us with any further information.
We hope that you respond to us as soon as possible because if you fail to
respond before the expiry date we may refer the package to the Nigerian
Commission for Welfare as the package do not have a return address.

Kindly get back to us (FedEx Delivery Post) by filling the form and send
it to the back to this office.This is mandatory to re-confirm your Postal
address

and telephone numbers.

Full Name:
Contact Address:
Country:
State:
City:
Sex:
Occupation:
Mobile/Fax No:

As soon as your details are received, our delivery team will give you the
necessary payment procedure so that you can effect the payment for the
Security Keeping Fees and hence the delivery of your package to you takes
place immediately.

Yours Faithfully,

Mrs. Asari Victor.
FedEx Online Admin Team.
Tel:+234-709-3073-270
 

[Nov 24, 2008] Internet Banking Upgrade


E-mail Security Information.
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Welcome to Chase
	

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Unsubscribing and getting in touch If you would prefer not to receive information about other products and services from us, please reply to this email with 'opt-out' in the subject line. Please don't reply to this message if you wish to contact Chase & Co. about any other matter, as we will not be able to respond to you. Instead you can contact Chase & Co. by calling us on 800 648 4833 or sending us a secure message by logging in to your accounts at www.chase.com and selecting the option to 'Report fraud and e-mail scams'. Calls may be recorded or monitored. No responsibility is accepted by the Chase & Co.in this regard and the recipient should carry out such virus and other checks as they consider appropriate.

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© 2008 JPMorgan Chase & Co. 

[Oct 22, 2008] IN GOOD FAITH.



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Date: Wed, 22 Oct 2008 21:00:52 -0500 (CDT)
From: "Lady Rebecca Thatcher." 
Subject: IN GOOD FAITH.
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From: Lady Rebecca Thatcher.
No:36 Old Shrewberry Street,
London England.

Beloved,

I am Lady Rebecca Thatcher, suffering from cancerous ailment.I used to be
married to Sir Jeremy Thatcher an English man who is dead and resting
peacefully. My husband was into private practice all his life before he
passed.When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of Twenty
Million Pounds (20,000,000.00 Million Great Britain Pounds Sterling),which
were derived from his vast estates and investment in capital market with
his bank here in UK.Presently, this money is still with the Bank.

Recently,my Doctor told me that I have limited days to live due to the
cancerous problems I am suffering from.Though what bothers me most is the
stroke that I have in addition to the cancer.With this hard reality that
has befallen me, I have decided to donate this funds to you and want you
to use this gift which comes from my late husbands hard work to fund the
upkeep of widows, widowers,orphans,destitute,the down-trodden, physically
challenged children,barren-women and persons who prove to be genuinely
handicapped financially.I took this decision because I do not have any
child that will inherit this money.

My happiness is that I lived a life worthy of emulation. Please assure me
that you will act just as I have stated herein. Hope to hear from you
soon. You can contact me through my personal email address
at:thatcherfunds90@hotmail.com

Stay Blessed as you carry out this humanitarian task.

Sincerely yours

Lady Rebecca Thatcher.

Tech Sector Update Special Edition - Yahoo! Finance

Phisher Kings Court Your Trust

By Brian Grow
BusinessWeek Online

Computer-based fraudsters are finding new ways to trick people -- not technology -- to get the information they seek

"Lawsuit against you," reads the subject line in an e-mail that hit thousands of in-boxes around the world last month. In flawless legalese, the message warns recipients that they recently sent an unsolicited fax to the sender's office. Citing U.S. civil code, its prohibition on sending junk faxes, and an actual $11 million settlement by restaurant chain Hooters, the missive threatens a lawsuit over the alleged junk fax.

"If you do not pay me $500 by the deadline for payment, I intend to sue you for violating the Telephone Consumer Protection Act," it reads. "If you force me to sue, I will not settle for less than $1,000." Details of the alleged lawsuit are contained in the document attached to the e-mail.

In today's litigious -- and digital -- society, being notified of a lawsuit via e-mail might not seem too unusual, right? Gotcha! The e-mail is a scam that preys on deep-seated fears of being hauled into court. Its target: unlucky recipients who may indeed be among thousands of companies that send junk faxes.

SPAM SANDWICH. The attachment -- labeled lawsuit.exe -- is a new variant of a computer worm called Bagle. When worried victims open the attachment, malicious code embedded in its text downloads onto their PCs, and then swiftly harvests all their e-mail addresses to send out even more spam. That second wave uses the victim's personal e-mail address to send malicious code disguised as, say, a Paris Hilton sex video, to friends and associates.

"This is one of the most innovative ideas used by spammers to target unsuspecting users," says Govind Rammurthy, chief executive of computer security firm MicroWorld Technologies, which sent out a warning about the lawsuit.exe scam in March.

As Web-based scams proliferate, it's often psychological cunning, deployed on top of surreptitious code, that is the secret to cyber-criminals' success. Like traditional con men on the street, Internet fraudsters need a never-ending supply of ways to convince victims to trust them -- to open an attachment, click a link, or innocently enter personal data on a Web page.

IN YOUR HEAD. Overpowering instincts, rather than firewalls, is the surest means, say analysts, to pickpocket personal identities and online bank accounts. "You can't install a software patch for a person's mind," says Barry C. Collin, chief executive of cyber-security consulting firm Threat and Risk Associates.

In fact, security analysts say hackers are spending serious effort in researching the psychological vulnerabilities of potential targets. Security firm TrendMicro's director of global education, David Perry, says they watch news headlines for poignant world events and often review the success of an attack by reading press releases and corporate warnings, in order to tweak the next attack for greater effectiveness.

Hackers also look for situations of confusion to exploit, such as a corporate merger. For example, at Vigilar's Intense School in Ft. Lauderdale, Fl., where they train people in ethical hacking to help fortify digital defenses, they use a bogus e-mail from someone pretending to be a helpdesk employee trying to verify account data for a database that is being combined in the wake of a merger.

TRUST ME.... "There is a lot of implied trust that you can manufacture -- and exploit," says Ralph Echemendia, an info-tech security instructor at Vigilar's. Echemendia used the 2004 merger of Wachovia and SouthTrust as a model to deploy the script and tap merger chaos.

Analysts say phishing attacks also often spike after a data security breach hits news headlines. The reason: Customers are already anticipating a potential request to update account data and monitor credit reports.

"It makes them more vulnerable to psychological scams," says Herbert H. Thompson, chief security strategist for Security Innovation.

ONE-TWO PUNCH. Take the case of a phish targeting Citibank customers this year. To build trust, it operates in two phases, say analysts. First, an e-mail purportedly from Citibank warns that customer accounts may have been compromised in a previous scam. But it doesn't ask for personal information.

Instead, the scam requests an e-mail address, just in case the victim's account is found to be hacked. Then, later, a second phish is sent out warning that, indeed, the account has been compromised -- and requests an update of financial details.

"Trust was built in the first step. Then, in the second step, they asked for confidential information," says MicroWorld's Rammurthy, who estimates some 60% of victims who received the second e-mail provided personal and financial data.

Indeed, with overall returns from phishing attacks falling, Web criminals are succeeding in finding novel new ways to convince users to open documents or click links that download data-stealing software onto PCs. Instead of directly asking the user to enter personal data into a fake Web site, cyber-criminals are embedding code into fake news articles or business-oriented "requests for proposals" which, when opened, install a backdoor into the PC, then log keystrokes. Russian security firm Kaspersky Lab estimates the use of data-stealing code designed specifically to steal financial information, known as Trojans, rose 402% in 2005.

SHARING THE STEALTH. The upshot: Fewer people are, themselves, coughing up personal info, but fraud losses continue to climb. A 2005 survey by Gartner found that just 2.5% of phish recipients responded with personal or financial information, down from 3% in 2004. But fraud losses connected to the theft of such information off the Web still rose from $690 million in 2004 to $1.5 billion last year. "If I'm a scammer, I have to do something that will make you trust me," says John Pescatore, senior vice-president of Internet security at Gartner.

Law enforcement agents say that while the thinking behind cyber-scams is not much more complex than age-old cons run by offline grifters, it's clear cyber-criminals are pooling their brainpower to devise new techniques. A DVD available in foreign black markets called "Hacker's Handbook" contains scores of tips on how to trick victims, according to Trend Micro's Perry.

Former hacker Kevin Mitnick, who now runs his own security consulting firm, hosts a two-day "social engineering" conference for clients that includes sessions entitled "Bugs in the Human Hardware." At hacker sites such as mazafaka.ru and astalavista.box.sk, criminals often share ideas on how, for example, to exploit new state laws in the U.S. requiring firms to issue warnings when customer databases have been hacked.

ROYAL SCAM. Some scam artists still plot the old-fashioned way: by holding physical court. Law enforcement agents say Nigerian fraudsters often gather in Internet cafes in the country's capital, Lagos, to concoct the newest bait.

Famous for pioneering so-called 419 letters -- pleading e-mails from bogus foreign businessmen seeking to move money out of their country by tapping U.S. victims' bank accounts -- the Nigerian scammers are now establishing romantic relationships in online dating Web sites in order to dupe lonely love interests into giving up financial information.

"It's group brainstorm," says Gregory S. Crabb, a senior investigator for the U.S. Postal Inspection Service in Washington, D.C., who has hunted cyber-criminals around the world.

CHEAP THRILLS. Hackers are even finding ways to take the pain out of writing malicious code, a move that may enable more concentration on upgrading the psychology of the cyber-scam. On Mar. 24, security firm Sophos said it had discovered a Russian Web site selling a spyware kit called WebAttacker for less than $20. The pre-fab software downloads a program that tries to turn off PC firewalls, then installs a keystroke-logging device.

Already, it has been spammed-out via e-mail touting news stories about bird flu and the recent death of ex-president of Serbia, Slobodan Milosevic. The technical skills required to be a cyber-criminal have been removed as an entry-level barrier. "In order for the cyber-crime business to continue, it is going to rely more and more on social engineering," says Ron O'Brien, senior security analyst at Sophos.

[Jan 22, 2006] Fake letter from Ebay member.

[Dec 20, 2005] Fake Visa letter

[Jan 22, 2006] Fake letter from Ebay member. In the test link 
http://contact.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?M2MContact&item=4589070441&requested=yamama_r6&qid=1470018712&redirect=0&sspagename=ADME:B:AAQ:UK:2
is actually linked to                     
http://82.165.29.85/icons/small/sec/secure/index.html
From - Sun Jan 22 09:34:40 2006
X-Account-Key: account1
X-UIDL: 18677-1053906845
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Date: Thu, 19 Jan 2006 07:52:33 +0100
From: mom2lindzemi <member@eBay.com>
Subject: Question from eBay Member
To: postmaster@softpanorama.org
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Your registered name is included to show this message originated from eBay.
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	*Question about Item -- Respond Now*	eBay

	
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Question from mom2lindzemi

This message w! as sent while the listing was *active*.
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Hi, 

I`m realy intrested in your item please let me know as soon as posible how to
purchase it.

Thanks

James

	
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!!!Actually!!! <http://82.165.29.85/icons/small/sec/secure/index.html>

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<http://cgi1.ebay.co.uk/aw-cgi/eBayISAPI.dll?ReportEmailAbuseshow&reporteruserid=kevinm8205&reporteduserid=yamama_r6&emaildate=2005/11/10:09:49:34&emailtype=0&emailtext=Hi+is+the+bike+hpi+clear%3F+do+you+have+any+better+pics+of+it%3F+is+this+the+original+paint+colour%3F&trackId=1470018712>.


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[Dec 20, 2005] Fake Visa letter with link to <http://www.coheteboy.com/usa.visa.com/index.html>

From - Tue Dec 20 08:22:22 2005
X-UIDL: 17902-1053906845
X-Mozilla-Status: 0001
X-Mozilla-Status2: 00000000
Return-path: <nobody@morpheus.dnsport.com>
... ... ...

Received: from unknown (HELO morpheus.dnsport.com) (69.56.205.220)
 by ...  with SMTP; Tue, 20 Dec 2005 05:37:19 +0000
Received: from nobody by morpheus.dnsport.com with local (Exim 4.52)
	id 1EoaBY-0007wY-2X	for postmaster@softpanorama.org; Tue,
 20 Dec 2005 00:37:16 -0500
Date: Tue, 20 Dec 2005 00:37:16 -0500
From: Verified by Visa <verify@usa.visa.com>
Subject: Protect your Visa
To: postmaster@softpanorama.org
Reply-to:
Message-id: <E1EoaBY-0007wY-2X@morpheus.dnsport.com>
MIME-version: 1.0
Content-type: text/html
Content-transfer-encoding: 8BIT
Delivered-to: postmaster@softpanorama.org
X-AntiAbuse: This header was added to track abuse,
 please include it with any abuse report
X-AntiAbuse: Primary Hostname - morpheus.dnsport.com
X-AntiAbuse: Original Domain - softpanorama.org
X-AntiAbuse: Originator/Caller UID/GID - [99 99] / [47 12]
X-AntiAbuse: Sender Address Domain - morpheus.dnsport.com
X-Source:
X-Source-Args:
X-Source-Dir:
Original-recipient: rfc822;speditor@optonline.net
Verified by Visa <https://usa.visa.com/personal/security/vbv/index.html>

Verified by Visa protects your existing Visa card with a password you create,
giving you assurance that only you can use your Visa card online.

Simply activate your card and create your personal password. You'll get the
added confidence that your Visa card is safe when you shop at participating
online stores.

You may activate now by entering your card number over our secure server
<http://usa.visa.com/personal/security/visa_security_program/vbv/privacy.html?it=il|/personal/security/visa_security_program/vbv/how_it_works.html|secure%20server>.
If your card issuer is participating in Verified by Visa (most issuers are)
you'll complete a brief activation process. You'll verify your identity, create
your Verified by Visa password and you're done.

<http://www.coheteboy.com/usa.visa.com/index.html>

© Copyright 2005, Visa U.S.A. All rights reserved.

[Dec 2, 2005] Reminder about the identity theft emails

Recently there have been a dramatic increase of identity theft attempts activity directed toward e-commerce site users: a sharp rise in so-called phishing e-mails, which attempt to steal consumers' user names and passwords by imitating e-mail from legitimate financial institutions (mainly banks). The most recent example of such fraudulent letter is reproduced below:

Please note that all such financial scam attempts usually contain a link in the email and a demand for immediate action to use this link with wording like "process is mandatory", "your account may be subject to temporary suspension." or "This instruction ... is obligatory to follow". Please be aware that presence of such link and any "demanding action" phases is a sign of financial scam.

We advice you to call your bank in case the letter addresses to you looks credible. Never try to answer such requests by mail. Never put your any financial data into the forms that are links to emails.

[Dec 1, 2005] Beware fake e-commerce sites offering 'bargain' Christmas gifts.

This sophisticated fraud works when people search on the internet for items they want to buy, and click on a link. They are then directed to a legitimate looking web page and instructed to 'Click here to download images' of what they want to buy. What they end up downloading is a self-extracting zip file that installs a Trojan on their PC.

This malware then redirects legitimate financial institution links to fraudulent websites allowing the scammer to harvest the user's details.

Between 80 and 100 new phishing websites are starting up daily. Scammers are getting much more sophisticated and they are harder for users to detect.

Please remember, if it looks too good to be true, it probably is.

[Aug 18, 2005] Another Citibank scam

Subject: PIN Number Update From Citibank
From: "Citi Identity Theft Solutions" <admin34@citibank.com>

Recently there have been a large number of identity theft attempts targeting Citibank customers. In order to safeguard your account, we require that you update your Citibank ATM/Debit card PIN.

This update is requested of you as a precautionary measure against fraud. Please note that we have no particular indications that your details have been compromised in any way.

This process is mandatory, and if not completed within the nearest time your account may be subject to temporary suspension.

Please make sure you have your Citibank ATM/Debit card and recent statement at hand.

To securely update your Citibank ATM/Debit card PIN please go to:

https://www.citibank.com /signin/citifi/scripts/login2/update_pin.jsp

Please note that this update applies to your Citibank ATM/Debit card - which is linked directly to your checking account, not Citibank credit cards.

Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter and thank you for using Citibank!

Regards,

Beryl Arroyo
Head of Citi® Identity Theft Solutions

Copyright 2004 Citicorp. All rights reserved.
Do not reply to this email as it is an unmonitored alias.

[Jun 14, 2004] MSNBC - Survey 2 million bank accounts robbed

'Constant siege'
The trend neatly follows a sharp rise in so-called phishing e-mails, which attempt to steal consumers' user names and passwords by imitating e-mail from legitimate financial institutions. A Gartner study released in May showed at least 1.8 million consumers had been tricked into divulging personal information in phishing attacks, most within the past year.

Phishing attempts designed specifically to steal bank information began to skyrocket about 10 months ago, according to Dave Jevans, chair of the Anti-Phishing Working Group. Overall, phishing e-mails have jumped 4,000 percent in the past six months, and just last month, Citibank overtook eBay as the most common target. The company faced an average of 16 attacks per day, and 475 separate phishing attacks during April, an increase of nearly 400 percent from March.

Citibank didn't immediately return requests for comment.

"It's working, there's no doubt about that...There's people who are under constant siege now," Jevans said. "It's like people setting up fake ATMs everywhere."

Some days, banks are targeted dozens of times, which not only leads to identity theft, but also jam-packed customer service telephone lines.

"Clearly the issues are far more significant than anyone expected they would be. Phishing and spoofing (setting up look-alike bank Web sites) are really getting to people," said Larry Ponemon, founder of privacy think tank Ponemon Institute, and a bank consultant. "It is an epidemic. It's a very big problem."

Creative ways to drain accounts
But phish isn't the only way criminals gain access to online bank accounts, according to industry experts. Computer criminals are becoming increasingly proficient at writing Trojan horse programs and keyloggers that steal passwords and account information. Such secret malicious programs, which exerts say are more widespread than many realize, could be the cause of up to half the account takeovers, Litan speculated.

Such programs can be installed on home users' computers through virus-laden e-mails. People who do their online banking at public computers, such as at Internet cafes, are also at risk from this kind of password swiping.

[Jun 10, 2004] theBakersfieldchannel.com - Money - Protect Your Bank Account From Financial-Aid Scams

With college tuitions skyrocketing, families are looking for creative ways to pay for their children's education.

But unfortunately, the Federal Trade Commission says many families fall prey to scholarship and financial-aid scams in the process.

The FTC has taken action against 12 financial-aid companies in the last four years.

In one case alone, at least 12,000 families were taken for more than $13 million. The companies made promises for college money that was never received.

But the best advice from college financial advisors is don't pay for what you can get for free.

John Casdorph has spent 25 years helping students find financial aid at Cal State-Bakersfield. He warned families to be weary of companies that offer financial-aid services for a fee.

"The chancellor's office at CSU has a position on companies that charge to provide a search service for financial aid and they don't encourage students to use those services," Casdorph said.

One New York-based company, Edifi, is coming to Bakersfield this weekend to host a free workshop. However, there is a price tag attached. If consumers decided to use Edifi while at the workshop, they are charged $895. However, if they wait, then the price goes up to $1,295.

Connie Alarcon of the Better Business Bureau said consumers shouldn't sign under pressure.

"If you are going to a workshop and they are telling you that you need to sign 'this document, at this point in time or the discount isn't available to you,' it's better that you are safe than sorry," Alarcon said.

Edifi has an unsatisfactory record with the New York BBB, but has not been investigated by the FTC.

John Braat, the chief operating officer for Edifi, defended his company and said that Edifi has been working to resolve complaints and improve its BBB rating.

Alercon said consumers should rely on the BBB report.

"We are here to help educate consumers and to help them from getting scammed or be in a situation where they aren't going to get their money back," Alercon said.

Casdorph said you should use your free services from local colleges and university financial-aid offices.

"We exist here as a financial-aid office to help students for free. We'll counsel them on financial-aid applications. We'll help them fill out forms. We'll even give them direction on how to search for scholarships, which is the harder part of financial aid," Casdorph said.

You can use CSUB, Bakersfield College, or any community colleges financial-aid services for free, even if you haven't been accepted as a student.

To contact the CSUB financial office, call (661) 664-3016 or stop by during office hours. To contact Bakersfield College, call (661) 395-4427.

[May 12, 2004] Very similar to PayPal scam. Bank account scams: email tries to fool the users into filling a email form with their account information. Can take several forms, see below

Dear U.S. Bank account holder,

In an effort to protect your U.S. Bank account from future fraudulent activities, we have issued this Information Alert.

We hereby recommend that you make an amendment to your account security features. Once you have amended your account information, your access to your bank account will not be interrupted and will continue as normal. However, failure to make this amendment may result in your account suspension for a certain period of time.

Please fill in your account information and make necessary amendments below:

Before you reactivate your account, all payments have been frozen, and you will not be able to use your account in any way until we have verified your identity.

 

FAQs

Q1: How to recognize Citibank Spoofing scam

A: While such e-mails appear to be from a well-known company they are easily detectable as real web site the links lead to is different from the web site shown in a link. For example link can be

https://web.da-us.citibank.com/Iogin.ref.49/scripts/cIient_conf.jsp

but actual website that is shown in the left bottom of IE screen if you move the mouse to the link without clicking on is different, for example

http://213.2.96.94:87/cit/index.htm

In any case banks are now never sen you emails that contain forms, this is a very unsecure practice. This actual link leads to a spoof web site which provide a form for updating or confirming sensitive personal information. To bait you, they may allude to an urgent or threatening condition concerning your account.

Please note that even if you don't provide what they ask for, simply clicking the link could subject you to background installations of key logging software or viruses.

Q2: I got a email with the subject

Re: official Information To Citibank Clients [Wed, 10 Nov 2004 12:41:38 +0200]

[The letter with Citibank scam is attached] This seems to be a scam of some sort. I suspect the java script they reference attempts to exploit some weakness in Windows. Should I send such things that make it through the spam filter to you or someone else, or what?

A: No this is a typical Citibank financial scam letter: they have a form where you can of your financial data that are enough for money transfers and they usually try to withdraw money from this account as soon as they get the data.

Bank account deactivation scams

A new phishing e-mail, purporting to be from the bank you use informs your that the bank blocked your account for some reason, for example "connected with money laundering, credit card fraud, terrorism and check fraud activity." It also said the bank sent account data to government authorities, and may have changed some accounts. Many types of this scam originated oversees and carry grammatical or typographical errors, for example:

"Citibank notifies all it's (sic) customers in cases of high fraud or criminal activity and asks you to check your account's balances"

or

"if you suspect or have found any fraud activity on your account"

[Dec 2, 2004] Reminder to about the identity theft emails

Recently there have been a dramatic increase of identity theft attempts activity directed toward e-commerce site users: a sharp rise in so-called phishing e-mails, which attempt to steal consumers' user names and passwords by imitating e-mail from legitimate financial institutions (mainly banks). The most recent example of such fraudulent letter is reproduced below:

Please note that all such financial scam attempts usually contain a link in the email and a demand for immediate action to use this link with wording like "process is mandatory", "your account may be subject to temporary suspension." or "This instruction ... is obligatory to follow". Please be aware that presence of such link and any "demanding action" phases is a sign of financial scam.

We advice you to call your bank in case the letter addresses to you looks credible. Never try to answer such requests by mail. Never put your any financial data into the forms that are links to emails.

Thank you for your cooperation.

An email tries to fool the users into filling a email form with thier account information. As MSNBC article Survey 2 million bank accounts robbed suggests:

'Constant siege'
The trend neatly follows a sharp rise in so-called phishing e-mails, which attempt to steal consumers' user names and passwords by imitating e-mail from legitimate financial institutions. A Gartner study released in May showed at least 1.8 million consumers had been tricked into divulging personal information in phishing attacks, most within the past year.

Phishing attempts designed specifically to steal bank information began to skyrocket about 10 months ago, according to Dave Jevans, chair of the Anti-Phishing Working Group. Overall, phishing e-mails have jumped 4,000 percent in the past six months, and just last month, Citibank overtook eBay as the most common target. The company faced an average of 16 attacks per day, and 475 separate phishing attacks during April, an increase of nearly 400 percent from March.

Citibank didn't immediately return requests for comment.

"It's working, there's no doubt about that...There's people who are under constant siege now," Jevans said. "It's like people setting up fake ATMs everywhere."

Some days, banks are targeted dozens of times, which not only leads to identity theft, but also jam-packed customer service telephone lines.

"Clearly the issues are far more significant than anyone expected they would be. Phishing and spoofing (setting up look-alike bank Web sites) are really getting to people," said Larry Ponemon, founder of privacy think tank Ponemon Institute, and a bank consultant. "It is an epidemic. It's a very big problem."

Creative ways to drain accounts
But phish isn't the only way criminals gain access to online bank accounts, according to industry experts. Computer criminals are becoming increasingly proficient at writing Trojan horse programs and keyloggers that steal passwords and account information. Such secret malicious programs, which exerts say are more widespread than many realize, could be the cause of up to half the account takeovers, Litan speculated.

Such programs can be installed on home users' computers through virus-laden e-mails. People who do their online banking at public computers, such as at Internet cafes, are also at risk from this kind of password swiping.

It can take several forms, for example

Recently there have been a large number of identity theft attempts targeting Citibank customers. In order to safeguard your account, we require that you update your Citibank ATM/Debit card PIN.

This update is requested of you as a precautionary measure against fraud. Please note that we have no particular indications that your details have been compromised in any way.

This process is mandatory, and if not completed within the nearest time your account may be subject to temporary suspension.

Please make sure you have your Citibank ATM/Debit card and recent statement at hand.

To securely update your Citibank ATM/Debit card PIN please go to:

https://www.citibank.com /signin/citifi/scripts/login2/update_pin.jsp

Please note that this update applies to your Citibank ATM/Debit card - which is linked directly to your checking account, not Citibank credit cards.

Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter and thank you for using Citibank!

Regards,

Beryl Arroyo
Head of Citi® Identity Theft Solutions

Copyright 2004 Citicorp. All rights reserved.
Do not reply to this email as it is an unmonitored alias.

===================================================

Dear U.S. Bank account holder,

In an effort to protect your U.S. Bank account from future fraudulent activities, we have issued this Information Alert.

We hereby recommend that you make an amendment to your account security features. Once you have amended your account information, your access to your bank account will not be interrupted and will continue as normal. However, failure to make this amendment may result in your account suspension for a certain period of time.

Please fill in your account information and make necessary amendments below:

Before you reactivate your account, all payments have been frozen, and you will not be able to use your account in any way until we have verified your identity.

====================================================

Hijacked Identity Problem (see also InstaKiss password-stealing scam)

You will usually receive a e-mail from some server on the internet that a particular mail cannot be delivered. When you look at the subject line it's immediately clear that this is spam that is distributed to other people using your address as "from" address.

This is a typical spam senders trick. They used your address as "from" address to send some questionable staff to other users, often hundreds of them.

The other common source is Klez worm.

No need to open the ticket: we can do nothing about this problem -- it's connected with the weakness of current version of mail protocol (SMTP) which was designed in good old days of Internet. It makes forging "from" address trivial and that is the weakness that spammers abuse.

See Ebay Identity Theft Scam below for more information.

Ebay Identity Theft Scam

This scam involved e-mails that asked recipients to log on to a Florida-based Web site, ebayupdates.com, and re-enter financial data for eBay.

The scam site sported the eBay logo and colors. Representatives of eBay were not immediately available for comment, but the company has issued a general warning on its Web site, urging caution over e-mails seeking passwords or credit card numbers.

"Some members have reported attempts to gain access to their personal information through e-mail solicitations that are falsely made to appear as having come from eBay," the company said.

"These solicitations will often contain links to Web pages that will request that you sign in and submit information...eBay employees will never ask you for your password."

The scam e-mail, usually has subject "Ebay billing error" and begins:

Dear Ebay Member,

We at Ebay are sorry to inform you that we are having problems with the billing information of your account.... ... ...

Electronic greeting card scam

Beware of the next electronic greeting card you receive. It may not be quite so friendly.

An e-card scam is circulating, conning people into clicking onto a phony Web site where they can download a virus or enable an attacker to snatch up their address book to spam their co-workers and friends. MessageLabs Inc., a British company with U.S. headquarters in Minneapolis, has put out an alert, warning users to stay clear of the latest online scam.

''It's a scam, really,'' says Angela Hauge, technical director at MessageLabs. ''The email itself does not contain a virus but it directs people to a Web site where they can download a virus... or they might grab up everyone in your address book...''

MessageLabs warns users that the scam, at first, comes off as an actual email greeting, which are becoming increasingly common, even on corporate accounts.

The email often says, ''I sent you a greeting. Please pick it up by clicking on the link below.''

The Web site originally mentioned in the email, according to MessageLabs, was hosted by FriendGreetings.com. But MessageLabs also has seen variations on the original email that contains links to several similar Web sites, such as cool-downloads.com or .net, and friend-cards.com or .net.

Hauge says it's fairly simple to distinguish a real e-card from the scam.

''When you go to a greeting card Web site, you should be able to view your greeting automatically,'' she explains. ''You shouldn't have to download anything. If you're asked to do that, don't and get out of there.''

InstaKiss password-stealing scam

America Online owns the AOL-InstaKiss.com domain, and American Greetings Corp. holds a trademark on the term "InstaKiss," but the companies haven't been able to stop Internet scam artists from trading on the name.

Security experts warned that similar scams are likely to resurface elsewhere on the Internet - and separate unwary users from their online accounts.

The initial variant of this fraud, varieties of which have been used for nearly two years, plays off a legitimate e-greeting service (AOL Keyword InstaKiss) offered by AmericanGreetings.com, the online unit of the greeting card giant, and promoted at America Online's singles area, LoveAtAOL.

The operator of the latest password-stealing site this week sent a bogus invitation to AOL users by instant message and e-mail. The message informed recipients that they had been sent an "AOL InstaKiss" by "someone who thinks very highly of you." By clicking a link in the message, the AOL user could receive his or her InstaKiss, according to the come-on.

For example one such site was located at http://www.webcomps.org/instakiss/ and used to have a fake AOL logo and instructed visitors to type in their AOL screen name and password to receive their InstaKiss. After users complained about the site, EarthLink Network shut down the page. But an Internet search using Google search engine can produce several still functional bogus sites that employ the same InstaKiss "phishing" scheme, as hackers refer to such password-stealing techniques. Besides mimicking AOL's site design, it featured links to destinations at the online service for added credibility.

Most of the bogus InstaKiss sites are hosted by free Web page services such as Lycos' Angelfire.com. Several rely on Web address redirection services such as Russia's Da.ru, which enable the scammers to create a site with an address such as http://aol-instakiss.da.ru.

This scam belongs to the so-called "social engineering" techniques employed by hackers.

Average Internet users, who are generally not security savvy are very likely to fall for this kind of scam. The "phish accounts" are used for a variety of purposes, ranging from free Internet access to identity theft.

Friend Greetings Spam Trojan

The controversial Friend Greetings software create by Panama-based Permission Media ( www.friendgreetings.com ) is currently causing spam outbreaks. A message arrives inviting the recipient to view an e-greeting on its website.

To see the card users must launch an ActiveX control, which automatically sends marketing material to everyone on the user's Outlook contacts list.

The company does mention this, but it is buried in a lengthy licence agreement.

Naive users are still clicking on the 'yes' button and installing the software, despite all the warnings.

Details of this can be found on the McAfee website here.

In truth Friends Greeting isn't a Trojan, much as I hate to defend the company that put it out. It does tell users what it is doing to do.

BONZI's Decective Advertizing Banners

Deceptive advertising is illegal. "A nationwide class action lawsuit was filed on November 25, 2002, in the Superior Court of Spokane County against Bonzi Software, Inc. Bonzi is among the world's most prolific issuers of internet advertising banners. Ads are highly misleading. See some samples. It is Bonzi, which is responsible for those irritating popup ads which say things like 'Your computer is broadcasting an internet IP Address...' and 'Your internet connection is not optimized ...'"

Bonzi's website has been ranked as one of the most frequently visited websites in the world.

Fake eBay Escrow sites

Escrow companies act as a third-party referee, taking payment from Internet aution buyers, but not releasing the money to sellers until the goods are delivered. They help to avoid fraud in Internet auction sales of big-ticket items such as jewelry or cars. This option is widely used on eBay.

Scam artists try to tricking auction buyers into wiring money to fraudulent bank accounts. The criminals build elaborate fake escrow Web sites, with convincing names like Simple-Escrow.net and WhyEscrow.com. Often, the Web sites are set up to imitate legitimate escrow services; to an untrained eye, it can be impossible to tell the difference.

The criminals then set up a trap auction on a popular auction site like eBay. When a winner asks how to make payment, the seller insist on the use of a particular escrow service. Then, the winner is steered to the fake service essentially wiring money to the con artists' bank account.

A legitimate escrow service which was mimicked by the con artists told MSNBC.com that it had heard from over 50 victims during the past two months. A company employee, who requested anonymity, said the average victim had lost over $10,000, with some having sent as much as $30,000 thinking they were buying items like gold watches, jewelry, or cars.

Since the money was sent via wire transfer, there is often no recourse for victims, especially if they were destined for overseas accounts.
Consumers should never buy or sell items to anybody who insists on using a specific escrow service. Propose an alternative - if that disturbs the other party, they are almost certainly con artists. If the escrow service and the seller appear to be working closely together, that's also a bad sign. One victim MSNBC spoke to got instructions on how to send money to the escrow company from the seller's e-mail address, for example. And wiring money to a bank outside the country is always a bad idea, experts say.

For more information, see


Phishing for your identity

The newest scams to hit the Web are authentic-appearing e-mails requesting verification of financial information. The scam technique, nicknamed "spoofing" or "phishing" (as in "fishing for information" but with a "p" like "phony"), is causing so many problems that the FTC, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the National Consumers League and Earthlink held a press conference recently in Washington, D.C., to raise the public's awareness of the problem.

"Bogus e-mails that try to trick customers into giving out personal information are the hottest, and most troubling, new scam on the Internet," says Jana Monroe, Assistant Director of the FBI's Cyber Division.

In this scam, the phisher sends out a legitimate-looking e-mail that claims to be from a company the reader does business with and tells the reader that there is an account error, possible fraud or other problem with the account. The reader is asked to click on a link in the e-mail and enter account information on the linked Web site. The link takes the reader to a phony Web site that gathers the information and could use the information to drain the reader's bank account, charge up their credit card and steal their identity.

Recently, it was reported that con artists were attempting to trick EBay, PayPal, AOL, BestBuy.com and Discover Card users into revealing their Social Security number, bank account and credit card information. Now, we learn that the same trick is being used on customers of Earthlink and SonyStyle.com.

All of these companies have stated that they would never ask their customers for personal information in an e-mail.

Remember that anyone can build a legitimate-looking Web site. Don't fall for this scam.

Tax rebate scam

Knowing that many parents are eager to get their Advance Child Tax Credit, con artists having been calling American homes, promising to speed up the rebate process for a fee of $39.99 -- to be placed on a credit card. While the tax credit of as much of $400 per child, issued by the government is real, the promise of the cons is not.

The Internal Revenue warns that persons who give the cons their credit card number may find large charges on their bill -- and their tax credit won't be coming any sooner.

The IRS began sending out the tax credit checks July 25.

"The only thing the taxpayer needs to do is cash the check," said Mark W. Everson, IRS Commissioner. "If you qualify, we will send you a notice. There's no need to call, no need to apply, no need to fill out another form. The IRS will do all the work. A few days after the notice, you will get the check."

This scam is similar to other tax scams the IRS has reported in the past.

Con artists troll for patriotic consumers

When U.S. troops shipped out to Iraq, con artists headed for Americans' wallets, using patriotism to make a profit. Unfortunately, this is not a new phenomenon. "Fraud perpetrators pick newsworthy events to trigger interest in their marketing ploys," says Ken Hunter, president and CEO of the Council of Better Business Bureaus. The latest batch of con artists are profiting off the war effort in a number ways -- from hawking deals on unnecessary survival gear to collecting for bogus charities.

Would you pay $100 a month to get daily updates on your family member serving in the military? Many families would, but that's not a service the government is selling. It's a scam thought up by con artists. Jerry Maness of Service, Ala., has a nephew named William who is serving in the Navy. Maness received a call in early April from a man who seemed to think he was talking to William's father -- not his uncle. The caller promised that for $100 a month his company would give Maness a daily update on William's status. The man asked for Maness's credit card number. Maness didn't fall for it. He called the sheriff.

Bank Load Scams

Federal banking regulators say scam artists are impersonating banks around the country and committing both ID theft and wire fraud. The scam starts with fake ads in newspapers, complete with authentic bank logos, regulators say. The ads offer great loan terms, but the supplied phone numbers actually connect callers to the alleged perpetrators. Consumers who agree to refinance their home loans then lose all their personal information, and usually the first month's payment, too. Fifty financial institutions have been so impersonated, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. says.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation recently released a warning to consumers about bogus ads placed in small or community newspapers. The bogus ads offer mortgage, small business, debt or consolidation loans. The ads look real because they use the logos of real banks -- but with different contact information. The contact numbers in the ads have been traced to prepaid cell phones.

Potential victims who apply for these bogus loans are asked to provide their Social Security number and are then told their loan has been granted. The scammers fax the victim a loan application, requesting bank account information and sometimes a copy of the applicant's driver's license and Social Security card. The scammer then asks for an advance payment through a Western Union wire transfer. Only when the fake loan never appears does the victim realize what has happened -- he's wired cash to a thief and his identity has been stolen.

The FDIC warns that you should be suspicious of any bank that requests you to wire money outside of the banking system or to what the scammers are calling a "third-party consultant."

If you think you may be a victim of this scam, you should file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission and contact one of the credit bureaus to request a fraud alert be placed on your credit report.

The FDIC has discovered that the scammers are communicating with the newspapers through prepaid cell phones purchased in Canada. This scam sounds remarkably similar to another advance loan scam being run out of Canada.

Payroll transfer scam

The recent scam of this kind pretends to be from corporate payroll and it asks you where they need to transfer your next paycheck. Please remember that corporate payroll uses WEB form for this and in no way your bank accounts, credit card numbers or social security numbers can be disclosed in email to anybody.

Porno Webmaster/money laundering Scam

ID thieves are very inventive in trying to provoke consumers into disclosing credit card information. On Oct 23, 2003, a new identity theft scam that uses a sensational and upsetting email to attempt to shock consumers into giving up valuable financial information is surfaced on the Internet.

The scammers' email states:

We have just charged your credit card for money laundering service in the amount of $234.65 because you are either a child pornography webmaster or deal with dirty money, which requires us to launder them and then send to your checking account. If you feel this transaction was made by our mistake, please press 'No.' If you confirm this transaction, please press 'Yes.

If you press "No" you are asked to enter your credit card number and expiration date in the form at the bottom of the email. The form with this information must be filled out in order for the recipient to be able to press "No" (and thus deny being involved in any of the criminal activities mentioned in the message.)

The email scam was first reported in North Carolina by officials with the Land-of-Sky Regional Council of Governments in Asheville and has since been reported by recipients across the state.

e-commerse site users who receive this email should delete it and should not attempt to respond in any way. Consumers who have responded to the email and provided their credit card information should contact their credit card company immediately.


Postal Forwarding Scam

MSNBC - Online job scammers steal millions

Catherine, a recruiting specialist, was out of work for nearly a year when a friend sent her a job opening listed at Vault.com. Ready to try almost anything, she quickly responded to the ad and e-mailed her resume, applying for a position as "correspondence manager."

And just that quickly, she became an unwitting member of an Internet scam that's being blamed for a half billion dollars in attempted thefts from U.S. firms during the past 18 months. The crime has Internet merchants, along with the FBI and U.S. Postal Inspection Office, fit to be tied.

Within days, before Catherine even knew she had been hired, packages containing a digital camera and a computer monitor arrived at her door. Her instructions were simple: repack the items and ship them to an address in Russia. For her trouble, she would earn 13 percent of the sale price. It seemed reasonable enough, so she sent the package along.

Days later, she got a phone call from a man who said he was told to wire $10,000 into her bank account.

"I had no idea what he was talking about," she said.

Her caller was an eBay.com user, who had recently won the bidding for a classic electric guitar and then been told to wire the large payment to Catherine. She was then instructed to move the money overseas, to an account controlled by her new boss.

Catherine knew right away something was terribly wrong. She called the FBI, which informed her that she'd unknowingly helped a global crime ring. An agent then told her the FBI had an ongoing investigation into the crime ring, and asked that she "play along" with the con artists for a while in an attempt to unearth more information about them.

Within a week, dozens of packages and wire transfers were headed Catherine's way - some $35,000 in money and merchandise in less than 10 days.

"These people are very, very organized." she said.

Out of control

Catherine had unwittingly signed up to be part of a new scam that's raging on the Internet, dubbed "postal forwarding," or "reshipping fraud" by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. According to authorities, thousands of job seekers have been caught up in the con.

"It's out of control," Barry Mew, spokesman for the Postal Inspection Service, said. "My phone rings off the hook. ... There are hundreds more like (Catherine)."

At best guess, Mew said, the con artists have already made off with between $5 million and $10 million. One major credit card company has seen losses of $1.5 million to the scam, and a payment processing company for an Internet site is out $1 million, he said. Mew declined to name the companies.

Some of the recruited helpers are losing big money, too, Mew said. One woman passed on $25,000 to Eastern Europe before she caught on to the con. When one of the victims who sent money to her stopped payment on his $2,500 check, his bank withdrew the money from her account - leaving her with a $2,500 loss. She had to sell a mutual fund devoted to her child's college education fund to cover the loss, Mew said.

FBI spokesman Paul Bresson said he couldn't comment on specific investigations, but that the agency did have ongoing investigations into reshipping frauds.

"This is something we are familiar with," he said.

'This is a huge crime. It's phenomenal. It's been hovering under the radar a bit, but it's giant.'
- Susan Henson

spokeswoman, Merchant Risk Council

During a sweep of Internet-related arrests announced last month by the FBI, the agency issued a warning about reshipping schemes. As part of that warning, the Merchant Risk Council, a non-profit organization created by a consortium of electronic commerce firms, released the results of a 120-day study of fraud at the top eight Web retailers.

The council found 5,000 consumers had participated in the scam from July to October, enabling con artists to steal $1.7 million from those eight sites during that 120-day period. A host of other fraud attempts were stopped by the sites. Total attempts to steal merchandise using the reshipping scam add up to an estimated $500 million, said Susan Henson, spokeswoman for the Merchant Risk Council.

"This is a huge crime," Henson said. "It's phenomenal. It's been hovering under the radar a bit, but it's giant."

The elaborate scam is a mixture of credit card fraud, identity theft, and auction fraud. The Net of victims is wide, ranging from eBay auction winners, to credit card firms, to major online retailers. Catherine said she received packages purchased from Amazon.com with stolen credit cards.

Amazon spokeswoman Patty Smith denied the scam had hit online retailer very hard.

"This really isn't a big issue for us," she said. "Our fraud detection systems are sophisticated enough ... to catch these kinds of things."

But Jonathan Lane, a fraud investigator for online retailer PCMall.com, said major Internet retailers are indeed being hit by the scam.

"There's a substantial number of merchants involved," Lane said.

Ads all over the Web
It starts with hundreds of recruiting advertisements on job sites like Monster.com and CareerBuilder.com. At any given time, Mew said, he can spot ads on 25 different Web sites. Other victims have been approached in Internet chat rooms and pointed directly to the fraudulent company's Web site, where the job postings are listed.

The help wanted advertisements are innocuous enough.

"Our company is engaged in correspondence managing, distributing different goods worldwide, buying and reselling these goods," says one version of the ad, which appeared on CareerBuilder.com for about a week, until it was removed after MSNBC.com brought it the Web site's attention.

Con artists have even managed to change billing addresses on stolen credit cards to match with their recruits.


The ad explained the need for U.S-based employees to ship products overseas: "Everybody knows Russia is a part of Europe, but most of foreign people are afraid to have business with {sic} country ... We would like to prove our respectableness, but when we communicate with people from other countries they can't avoid stereotypes. So, we are looking for the persons who can represent our company in his country. Their duty will be to accept money and different goods, because often people don't want to send money to my country."

Put simply, the employees are used to move merchandise or money out of the United States. But behind the scenes, the organized crime ring is using a variety of confusing tactics.

One flavor of the scheme is designed to circumvent fraud protections at mail order companies and Web sites while stealing popular items such as handheld computers, digital cameras and DVD players. To avoid raising suspicion, the con artists make sure the shipping address -- the address of the "recruit" -- is in the same state as the billing address on the stolen credit card. To do so, the con artists have a wide variety of employees and stolen credit cards to choose from. They have also managed to change billing addresses on stolen credit cards so they match the recruit's locale. Some 1,300 accounts were updated with new billing addresses at one credit card company victimized by the con artists, Mew said.

Auction bidders, such as the man who was trying to purchase a $10,000 classic guitar, are also targeted. Con artists impersonate a recruit and place auction items for sale. They then tell the winners to wire funds to the recruit's U.S. bank account, avoiding any suspicions aroused by the mention of overseas wire transfers. The recruit, of course, is then instructed to wire the funds overseas.

Enticing terms
In tough economic times, the promise of a 15 percent cut is enticing. Catherine wasn't the only one who fell for the ad she answered at Vault.com. At one point, her new boss accidentally sent a bulk e-mail that listed 17 other e-mail addresses, all recruits who had signed up to work for the alleged company.

The homebound are at special risk of being caught up in the scam, said PCMall's Lane.

"When the recruits are Social Security recipients, people on disability, single parents, and unemployed people from coast to coast, it's a story that hits pretty hard," he said.

Not every recruit catches on as quickly as Catherine. One California recruit sent 750 packages - average value, $1,500 - to Russia between October 2002 and March 2003, Mew said.

While often not legally guilty of theft, recruits are often guilty of falsifying government documents, as they are instructed to declare the packages as "gifts" on Customs forms. They might also be guilty of income tax evasion, Lane said. And then there's the humiliation.

"Not only was I arrested for theft by receiving," one anonymous victim posted to a Web site, "[I] lost my computer, my dignity, the humiliation, my dog went to the pound, had to bail him out to! Attorney cost $2000.00," he wrote. "I was only involved with them for 3 weeks before I was arrested and I only made $200.00."

Recruits are also at risk of identity theft, since they usually give the con artists their bank account information and other critical data while signing up for the job. A victim named Brenda said that after she realized she'd been scammed, and went to the police, the con artists threatened her.

"These people have my identification; Social Security Number, address and handwriting sample," she said. "Since this investigation began, I have received emails that state 'I KNOW WHO YOU ARE.' I fear for the safety of myself and my family." She eventually moved, believing she wasn't safe at her old address.

'It's surreal. You're sitting here looking for a job, and all these thousands of dollars are slipping through your hands.' - Catherine

recruited to work for online scam

Catherine said she received calls from dozens of angry auction winners as she played possum for the FBI. When she tried to explain she was an unwitting character in the con, many didn't initially believe her.

"I was getting threats from people saying, 'I'm going to sue you,' " she said. "It's surreal. You're sitting here looking for a job, and all these thousands of dollars are slipping through your hands." Her bank ultimately accepted about $4,000 in wire transfers, even though she told the firm to reject all wire payments. Meanwhile, she lost the $108 she spent shipping the initial package to Russia. She also learned a disturbing lesson about human nature when she sent an e-mail to all her 17 "co-workers," warning them that the job was really a scam.

"One guy wrote, 'I don't care where the money is coming from,' " she said. "It's amazing this person wrote this to a stranger. The FBI's going to take a look at him."

Surfers trust online job postings
Pam Dixon, executive director of the World Privacy Forum, said she has been studying the growing help wanted scam for several months. It works because unemployed people are vulnerable and an easy target for con artists, she said. One victim she spoke to "had been out of work for a year. That's a common factor," Dixon said.

"We are capable of extraordinary rationalization" when unemployed, she said.

'There's no job at home receiving and forwarding packages. ... People like to think there are jobs like that, and that's why it's so successful.'
- Barry Mew

spokesman, Postal Inspection Service

Making matters worse, online job sites often give users a false sense of security, Dixon said, because consumers have the impression the ads have been vetted by the site -- as newspaper classified ads often are. What's more, many surfers arrive at CareerBuilder.com by clicking "help wanted" buttons while browsing local newspapers online, as the sites act as the employment section for hundreds of newspaper Web sites around the country. CareerBuilder.com is owned by newspaper conglomerates Gannett, Knight-Ridder, and The Tribune Company.

"I believe there's an implied trust when job seekers go there," Dixon said.

Jenni Sullivan, a spokeswoman for CareerBuilder.com, said her company has employees who regularly review job listings on the site for fraud.

"Customer service representatives use different search methods. ... They continually monitor the site and if they come across anything suspicious they take immediate action," she said. "This is not as prevalent as I believe other people are saying it is. We haven't seen an indication that there's been a rise in this activity (at CareerBuilder)."

Monster.com spokesman Kevin Mullins said some of the fraudulent ads have been placed on his company's site, but said their appearance is "rare."

"Most often we take the job down within a couple of hours," Mullins said.

The use of fraudulent postal forwarding companies in a scam was first chronicled in April by MSNBC.com, but there is evidence the crime rings has been operating since April 2002, Lane said.

Mew said said he's not optimistic the criminals will be caught any time soon; only consumer education can even slow them down.

"We need to educate the masses. There's no job at home receiving and forwarding packages," Mew said. "And there's no job sitting at home receiving money and sending the money to Eastern Europe. People like to think there are jobs like that, and that's why it's so successful."


Recommended Links

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Sites

http://pages.ebay.com/education/spooftutorial Learn how you can protect yourself from spoof (fake) emails at:

Bankrate.com has a list of common e-mail scams. Jusr serach the site for the work 'scams"

FTC Dirty Dozen 12 Scams Most Likely To Arrive Via Bulk Email

AT&T Fraud Education At Home

Nigerian "Frozen Assets" Scams - UM Virus Busters

www.scamorama.com



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