Does that title sound familiar? My wife and I got an email this morning from my father that read as follows:
Subject: I’m writing this with tears on my eyes !!!
I’m sorry for this odd request and I’m writing this with tears on my eyes due to the situation of things right now, I’m stuck in London United Kingdom with my family,we came down here for vacation and we got Mugged at gunpoint, worse of it is cash cell phone and credit cards were stolen , it’s such a crazy and terrifying experience for us, we need help sort out our hotel bill and flying back home, the authorities are not being 100% helping us, but we thanks God we still have our passports, Our return flight leave today,But we still have problem in sorting out the hotel bills.Please help us i promise to refund it back.
Now I’m freaked out.
There were two problems with this email:
- My father doesn’t write like he barely understands english. In fact he’s one of the most eloquent writers I have ever known and is a native speaker of the Queen’s English.
- My father lives 12 miles away and has no travel plans
Turns out this is happening to a surprising number of people. It’s a growingly common scam. It’s also happened to a friend of mine. Apparently there is a keystroke-logging trojan that’s in the wild. Virus scanners like F-Prot, and current Mal-ware scanners are not detecting it and it’s causing a lot of havoc:
- Google Support
If you see an email like this from any of your friends… CALL THEM before you decide to try to send money to them. Also, if you get an email like this from your friends, tell them to UNPLUG THEIR COMPUTER from the internet.. erase it completely and RE-install windows.
You could also tell them that perhaps they should consider buying a Mac… Because in 4 years of owning and using them I have yet to have them compromised by trash like this.