Diana Kuyper: Cyberspace crooks await the gullible
June 2, 2011 5:22PM
Updated: July 8, 2011 2:15PM
I could be a millionaire sometime soon. But first I have to make sure my credit card information is not in jeopardy by providing personal information to three different credit card companies because my accounts have been “compromised.”
And to make matters more complicated, today I just received a request from “paypal?” to update my account, otherwise it will be suspended.
Let’s take a look at all the latest e-mails in my in-box, starting with the request from “paypal?” Yes, it has a question mark at the end, a red flag that would make me hit the delete button regardless of the fact that I have not used Pay Pal for any purchase in at least a half-dozen years.
I also received this heart-stopping notification from the “administrator” of Bank of America: “We recently have determined that different computers have logged onto your Online Banking account. We now need you to re-confirm your account information to us or we will be forced to suspend your account indefinitely, as it may have been used for fraudulent purposes.”
I don’t have any accounts or credit cards with Bank of America.
And then I received an e-mail from Google Corporation in London, telling me I had a winning ticket number and in honor of their 15th anniversary I won one million pounds.
I only had to provide my personal and bank account information to them to receive my one million pound through a bank-to-bank transfer.
If one million pounds were not enough, I could also cash in on another $200,000 offer by contacting Western Union within 10 hours of receiving the e-mail notification and provide my personal and banking information to receive that windfall.
These notifications and warnings are so transparently fraudulent that all I have to do is read the subject line to know they are a lot of hooey. But what is scary is if I were really gullible, by now my bank accounts could be cleaned out and I could have racked up thousands of dollars in credit card charges in the past week.
Someone, somewhere is looking at this nonsense and believing it. Don’t be a victim of these Internet crooks. Hit your delete button and send them where they belong — into oblivion.
Diana Kuyper’s column appears Fridays. You can e-mail her at email@example.com.