!Hoax warning!

Your friend did not lose their wallet and they do not need money!

Have you gotten a desperate email, text, IM or phone call from a friend or family member who needs money?

They usually say "I lost my wallet" and "I am traveling" and naturally "I need money" as well.

fakeTheir request may sounds legitimate. You may get really worried. Stop!

Don't fall for it. Don't send money! It is probably another scam.


Who is Affected

Rich people. Poor people. Famous people. Sexologists. UK Politician Jack Straw...

Web-based email sites like Hotmail, Yahoo, and Gmail are all susceptible. Facebook and other social networking sites too.

You too!

How the Phisher/Hacker/Scammer Works

  1. Scammers are getting smarter. They are using proper language. They are using more personal details (obtained through hacks and identity theft).
  2. You get an emails supposedly from your email admin. They ask you to reply to the Email with your username and password (and occasionally with other personal info). They say refusal will result in your account being cancelled.
  3. You receive a chat request - e.g. on Facebook - from a friend. After accepting the request, the friend tells you their wallet was stolen and they need money.
  4. You get a message asking you to run a program. It sounds legit, but it is actually a Trojan Horse that can compromise your computer or network.
  5. Phishing messages today look just like legitimate messages. They look like they come from friends or businesses such as banks, phone companies, electronic payment services, credit card companies, etc. Even the graphics look legit. They may even warn you about fake messages! But the link they want you to click is usually fake, although you may not be able to tell.
  6. Spear phishing is a new form of phishing which targets a specific user. These emails look authentic. They may even include your complete name or refer to other real things. Spear phishers gather this info by doing research or breaking into databases. These emails can fool even tech-savvy people.
  7. Scammers hack into your friends email (usually by guessing their useless password), and then send out the "help me" note to EVERYONE in the address book.
  8. Newer phishing emails do not contain any obvious fake links. They don't ask you to visit fake Websites or install Trojan Horse software. They try to fool you in other ways to create a hole in your computer or network.

What You Can Do

1) Call your friend (don't reply to the email!)

2) Tell them their email was hacked and suggest they do the following:
a) reset or close their account
b) warn and apologize to everyone in their address book
c) notify their email company
d) only use secure passwords

3) Tell your friend that their password was probably not safe. This resulted in a scammer getting access to all the emails and addresses in their email account. Ouch! Now your friend and everyone in their address book is more susceptible to identity theft.

4) Use a browser such as Mozilla Firefox with antiphishing features. It can warn you about bogus sites.

5) Use email software such as Mozilla Thunderbird with antiphishing features. It can warn you about bogus emails.

6) Run antimalware or antispyware software and keep it updated

7) Verify ANY requests for MONEY

More Information

UK Justice Secretary Jack Straw hacked

Family Member Impersonated

Sexologist Hacked

Sample Scam Email

Hope you get this on time,sorry I didn't inform you about my trip in Scotland for a Program, I'm presently in Scotland and am having some difficulties here because i misplaced my wallet on my way to the hotel where my money and other valuable things were kept. presently i have limited access to internet,I will like you to assist me with theloan of $ 2500 to sort-out my hotel bills and to get myself back home.

I have spoken to the embassy here but they are not responding to the matter effectively,I will appreciate whatever you can afford to assist me with,I'll Refund the money back to you as soon as i return,let me know if you can be of any help.I don't have a phone where i can be reached.
Please let me know immediately.