Internet fraud - Introduction
NO, no more spam! (c) John Coppens 2003
Everyone connected to the Internet receives Spam - I know of no
exception. This has to be the most equally distributed fraudulent
activity of all. Even if exceptionally the recipient of spam mail
actually gave his e-mail address voluntarily, in the huge majority of
cases, the addresses were 'harvested' by indirect means.
Though these pages originally only described spam, the sheer volume
of other kinds of fraud invading our privacy has increased in such
a way that we have to be more careful than ever. Some are so
convincing that even a normally vigilant computer user can easily
be lured into these schemes.
Your privacy cannot be garanteed on the internet... Period. Even
a page owner who has good intentions, can tomorrow be part of another
firm with less scruples... and divulge the data you provided him
with. Your address may be on some Windows machine, which may then be
infected with a virus and distribute it over the entire 'net.
In the next pages, I'll try - with time - to describe some of the
more common frauds and the techniques applied. The main raison d'être
for these pages is the Spanish version - little or no information is
available on the subject in Spanish. Below is the list of the
Spam forms covered - on each of the pages are more links to sites
with related information.
- The famous 'Bill S.1618'
- 'You cannot consider this message spam'. Who hasn't received a
mail with this phrase or a variation of it? Like all good lies,
it's based on something that exists - it was a proposed bill that
luckily was never approved.Read more on this bill and some other intents to make spam more
legal-looking or respectable...
- Nigerian Fraud - 419
- At this time, about one of each 250 messages is an invitation to
help out in a multimillionair business deal, where you have been
chosen as the only trustful person to participate. Did you know
that some organizations estimate this fraud to be the second source
of national income to Nigeria?
- Not as innocent as they seem
- There are many small tricks spammers use to get your e-mail
confirmed. Too many to dedicate a page to each of them. Here's
an (ever-growing) list of things I detected or found documented
on the web.
(c) John Coppens ON6JC/LW3HAZ