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Phish Smorgasbord

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More on Phishing.
New Resource! Nov 06 the PHISHTANK tracks Phishing attempts and the sites that support them.

      They are still at it.
      The Phishermen that is.

      Sometimes the email LOOKS legitimate. They use the actual logo from the company or bank, they word it stiffly and go through some of the dire consequences if you don't respond, and enclose a link that takes you to a site that seems to be official.
      They are ALL scams.
      Identity Theft on the Hoof. Rip Offs are Us. White Collar Crime to Go. You get the idea.
      The SPAMMER is trying to get you to respond to a SCAM email with your personal banking information so they can drain your account and get a low interest business loan in your name, and then open up seventeen credit card accounts all billed to YOU. Or even go on a massive shopping spree for designer automobile rims and fur coats and Hank Aaron rookie cards on an online shopping service at your expense.
      Consider the following:

TO: A Media Desk Mailbox
FROM: eBay Customer Support
DATE: 08:40 July 14, 2005
SCAM SPAM from eBay
From eBay's REAL website:
Legitimate eBay emails
eBay will never ask you to provide account numbers, passwords or other sensitive information through email. If eBay does request information from you, a copy of that email will be in the My Messages box in My eBay. If you have any doubt that an email really is from eBay, open a new browser window, type, and sign in. Any email that looks as if it is from eBay, mentions a problem with your account or requests personal information, and is not in My Messages in My eBay, is a spoof (fake) email.
For more information from eBay please see the following page on their site:

TO: Another Media Desk Mailbox
FROM: LaSalle Bank Technical Services
DATE: 7/18/05
SCAM SPAM from LaSalle bank

OF COURSE this is not from the Bank either. But the following IS:

Please be aware that fraudulent emails are being circulated to LaSalle Bank customers and non-customers that appear to be from LaSalle Bank but which are, in fact, sent by imposters. LaSalle Bank is not sending these fraudulent emails. If you received an email or pop-up requesting you to login to online banking OR provide your LaSalle Bank ATM/Debit Card and Pin Number, do not respond.

      Something else that is a dead giveaway on these things is that the email that you open is a graphic. There is no text to it. Both of the above examples were posted as received, except the active link to the scammer site was disabled. The eBay graphic was named, as it still is coprinus.gif and the one from the bank was luxembourg.gif. Interesting names for eBay Customer Support and Lasalle Bank to pick for their letters to customers, no?
      There is a very good reason the SCAM SPAMMERS don't use actual text in their emails. Many SPAM filters would have kicked these two letters out because of their content. If it comes through as a picture, there is no way to evaluate the content otherwise. And if you name the picture something nonsensical, it is even more unlikely to be stopped at the border.
      Also, below the graphic are some nonsense words in the same font color as the background so you have to highlight them to see them. In the case of the LaSalle Bank letter they were: "in 1824 in 1802 in 1949 Netscape some advice about", but they could be anything, and often appear to have been cut from a recent news article. They are there so the email will not appear blank to the filters, which would also keep it from being delivered. REAL business emails do not usually include nonsense filler.

      Now about PHISHING itself.
      A good warning comes from Hancock Bank in Mississippi and Louisiana and Florida. And while the infomation may be specific for that bank, it can be generalized to every bank on the Planet! READ IT it might just save your credit rating:

Email Security
Look for a Hancock Bank Greeting: E-mails from Hancock Bank will address you by name or the business name associated with your Hancock account. We will not send an e-mail with the greeting "Dear Customer" or "Dear HandyNet User".
Don't share personal information via e-mail: We will never ask you to enter your password or financial information in an email or send such information in an e-mail. You should only share information about your account once you have signed on to .
Don't download attachments: Hancock Bank will never send you an unsolicited e-mail with an attachment or software update to install on your computer. E-mails with attachments will only be sent at your request and will either be password protected or sent via secure e-mail, if applicable.
Use Your Account Wisely
Don't share your account: Don't use your accounts to collect or transfer money for someone else. These types of activity are often conducted as forms of money laundering or mail fraud and may result in significant criminal penalties. If someone contacts you and asks you to transfer money on their behalf, you should deny the request and contact us immediately.
Increase your security: Periodically change your HandyNet online user ID or password and be sure to establish a HandyCall access code on each account for telephone banking. In addition, ask to establish a security code/ID with Hancock Bank to prevent anyone from obtaining personal information on your accounts either in person or through unauthorized telephone inquiries.

Read more at: Hancock Bank Online.

Other Businesses have similar warnings about fraud and account security including several that are common subjects of phishing emails.

The FDIC statement on the crime.

State Farm Insurance

Fifth Third Bank

Sun Trust Bank The Clearinghouse for All Things Fraudulent.

The with massive page of links to other resources as well as articles about many types of fraud.


Internet Fraud Complaint Center (IFCC) The FBI's response team.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police Fraud Info One of the best Police Sites going.

New Resource! Nov 06 the PHISHTANK tracks Phishing attempts and the sites that support them.

Many State and Metropolitan Police Forces also have Fraud and Scam Divisions, check with your local agencies for more information.

More on Phishing.

For more information and other resource links visit The Media Desk's Urban Legend and SCAM SPAM Page

[NOTE: The Media Desk is NOT affiliated with any of the above agencies or business except at the odd chance of being a customer. No Endoresement of the businesses by the Desk or of the Desk by the businesses is to be taken from their inclusion in this article. If any entity (except the scammers) wish to have their information removed from this or any other article on the Desk, please contact the Webmaster. Thank you ]

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