From: firstname.lastname@example.org CongratulationsYou've been awarded 418,000 British Pounds by Telefonica O2. Send an Email to email@example.com for claimsSo, I sent a reply from the email account I use for responding to text spam and I received this message the next day:
From: "O2 Mobile" firstname.lastname@example.org
I congratulate you on behalf of the management of Telefónica O2 UK Limited. This promotion is brought to you as a marketing strategy designed to create an awareness of the expansion of O2 network coverage to the North American region.
23 cell phone numbers were randomly selected worldwide via a computer draws system. Your number was selected from the 2nd category in the 1st draw, hence made you a silver award winner.
To facilitate the redemption of your award, kindly contact the Marketing Director with the following details:
First and Name:
Winning Phone Number:
Send information to Email: email@example.com
Upon receipt of the above information, the marketing director will verify the details to ensure you are the registered owner of the winning phone number. Once these formalities are concluded, your funds will be remitted to you. Be assured that your details are highly secured. It will neither be disclosed to third parties nor used for illegal activities.
TERMS AND CONDITIONS
1) Any falsification of your details will render you disqualified.
2) Friends or relatives are not eligible to receive award on your behalf.
3) To avoid multiple claims and impersonation you are expected to respect the integrity of the privileged information regarding your winnings, do not disclose to third parties until your prize money is received by you.
4) After you receive your award, you will be required to honor an invitation to join Telefónica O2 marketing team on TV for an interview regarding this promotion in North America.
Please advise how convenient this interview will be for you. Congratulations once more and thank you for being part of our expansion awareness program.
TELEFONICA O2 UK LIMITED
Office: 011 (44) 127 479 2353
Fax: 011 (44) 191 247 8151
260 Bath Road Slough Berkshire SL1 4DX
IMPORTANT NOTICE: This electronic message contains information from Telefonica O2 UK ltd which may be privileged or confidential. The information is intended to be for the use of the individual(s) or entity named above. If you are not the intended recipient be aware that any disclosure, copying distribution or use of the contents of this information is prohibited. If you have received this electronic message in error, please notify us by email.I would have figured that would have come out of Nigeria, China or someplace like that. But, no, it came from within the USA. A simple IP trace was all that I needed to do to discover this.
Obviously, this is a scam. So, I forwarded the message I received to O2's corporate offices in the United Kingdom for them to take whatever action they deem appropriate.
While the address given in the email is Telefonica's real address, the phone numbers don't match. The phone numbers are from Great Britain, but they are not Telefonica's. From another blogpost, I learned that if you call the numbers, somebody actually does answer the phone and they even give you a tracking number for whatever package they are supposedly sending you.
So, this isn't some slapped-together scam, these guys have a pretty convincing swindle going here and I think many people might be taken-in by them, due to their appearance of legitimacy. Due to the IP trace and the real British phone numbers, I came to the conclusion that this is actually a group of scammers working together with members on both sides of the Atlantic.
UPDATE: if you've received the first message, but the email address is different, please let me know by posting a reply to this blog. I'd like to update this blog with current information as it becomes available to me. A second post on this topic has been posted.
If you live in the United States, you may file a complaint against the sender of this text spam by going to this webpage