Most of us are getting pretty used to receive bogus emails claiming to come from online banks, trying to phish our information, and there can be few of us who haven’t been barraged by letters from Nigeria that say we are the rightful heir to a multi-milion dollar fortune.
Some scams, however, have a more surreal air to them. Take this one that has been intercepted a number of times by the experts at SophosLabs:
I am Mick Williamson by name. I have acquired your email address as a person who is actively involved in or is looking for an online business opportunity or looking for a part time job to compliment current earnings.
Email Us Back at WilliamsonCarpet@***.com for more informations. If you are interested email back for further informations and application form and Include this Reference Number for you identification ( #202 ).
This is not hoax, Dont Miss The Golden Opportunity. I will await the Interested candidate responses.
As you have probably guessed by now, this is just another “make money fast” scheme spammed out by cybercriminals in the hope that an unsuspecting soul will hand over their details in the belief that they will be given a legitimate job.
What’s interesting in this case is that the email includes a link to a legitimate company (MDW Carpets are a real carpet fitting store based in Norfolk, UK) and use the real name of the company’s owner.
We’ve been in touch with MDW Carpets who confirm that they have nothing to do with the email scam, and that it has caused them so much nuisance that they have actually had to put up a disclaimer on the front page of their website:
It’s clear that it’s not just the email recipients who can suffer as a result of these scams. Legitimate small businesses can also have their reputations tarnished by having their name dragged through the mud by unscrupulous scammers.
What leaves me baffled is how did the bad guys choose to pick on Mick Williamson and his family carpet company in the first place? Could it be a rival real-wood flooring business are using underhand methods to compete? Or are the vendors of terracotta tiles trying to boost their marketshare town-by-town? Let me know if you have any ideas.