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Microsoft Warns of Financial Crisis Fraudsters

 5:31 pm on Oct 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

Microsoft Warns of Financial [reuters.com]Crisis Fraudsters
Internet fraudsters will try to exploit the global financial crisis by sending fraudulent emails purporting to offer cash-strapped consumers new mortgages, loans or money from failed banks, a Microsoft executive said on Wednesday.

Tim Cranton, an Internet safety expert at Microsoft, said there are early signs that criminals have already begun trying to cash in on the economic turmoil.

"It's especially troubling right now with the financial crisis," he told Reuters in a telephone interview. "There are more and more people who are maybe in a more desperate or vulnerable situation. "We have seen an increase in some mortgage refinance type of scams. We are anticipating that they'll become more sophisticated.



 12:59 am on Oct 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

I hadn't really looked at this section of the MS website before. They call it Security At Home [microsoft.com]. This would be a good place to point new users to.

The Microsoft Lottery Fraud [microsoft.com] isn't really new. I've seen variations of this for years in spam. It is about time that they've taken a stand on this and provided some good information to consumers.


 8:10 am on Oct 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

I would like to know (if a survey was ever done) what percentage of people are actually so innocent that they believe these mails to be "real" and get trapped in fraudulent emails.

Most have very strong email scanning software installed, the web-based ones already have very strong filters. And also the mindset of people - I mean so many advertisements are done to stay away from phishing mails - but still people fall trap. WHY?

[edited by: DilipShaw at 8:12 am (utc) on Oct. 30, 2008]


 10:15 am on Oct 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

Why do people by lotto tickets? That wish, dream, and perhaps while doing email, get caught up in a dream. So dang few recall that if is sounds too good to be true...

Part of me wants the servers (centers) to scan for these scams and put them in the bit bucket. The better part of me says hands off and let me determine my future (so to speak).

We don't want management, kiddies. We truly don't because that is only one step away from 1984.


 1:15 pm on Oct 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

DilipShaw here is a survey done on spam I thought it was around 10% but looks like I was way off the numbers. This is why spam will continue to be generated.
Phishing emails isn't any better
[msnbc.msn.com...] so I would assume there is a very high percentage falling for theses as well.
I just wish my conversion factor was anywere close to these numbers.


 3:21 pm on Oct 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

Wow- 29%? No more Adwords- I'm becoming a spammer.

www.trustme.tld [give-me-all-your-money.tld]

Seriously though, NEARLY A THIRD of all users ADMIT to buying from spam? That's insane.


 8:40 pm on Oct 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

That's worth a study isn't it? Anyone have an IP they want to burn to test this? :).


 10:02 am on Oct 31, 2008 (gmt 0)

I wonder how the survey was done? Perhaps 29% of people who don't ignore an unsolicited email survery .....?

I really can't be bothered to check.


 10:05 am on Oct 31, 2008 (gmt 0)

Sorry, I'm still processing this information.

29% of people give CREDIT CARD DETAILS to CRIMINALS? (Assuming spam sent from a botnet, and assuming botnet assembled by illicit means).

Presumably including address (for delivery) and CV2 (for Customer not present transaction). Surely this statistic is wrong. I can't imagine there are that many stupid people- and credit card fraud, while obviously a problem, should be MUCH higer if literally millions of people gave card details out to anyone who asked.


 1:04 pm on Oct 31, 2008 (gmt 0)

I also have trouble believing the survey. 29% means almost a 3rd of online users have their credit card, or important password details shared. How can one take that?

... And amazingly this is a very recent survey.

[edited by: DilipShaw at 1:10 pm (utc) on Oct. 31, 2008]


 1:25 pm on Oct 31, 2008 (gmt 0)

Last time I researched this (maybe 3 years) I remember 10% but now that a great deal of new users have come online (baby boomers) I think they are much easier target.

I know if my Mom ever got internet (yea she doesn't have it) she would be easy prey for this.


 3:29 pm on Nov 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

Right, it's 1 in 12.5million aparently:
(referencing [news.bbc.co.uk ] )


 4:30 pm on Nov 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

Yak a bunch... tell all you know. Speak loudly via web or email. Remind all that "too good to be true" is as true as it ever was. And make sure they tell their kids, grandkids, or even the embryos yet to be born.

At some point folks will have to be responsible for their own actions....

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