Got this in my mailbox today, from the spammer or spamming group which has been very active in the last couple of months:
From: Ford Fall Clearance <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: Ford Dealers are Slashing-Prices. All Models Must Go..
FORD SEPTEMBER AUTO CLEARANCE
Don’t miss out on the “Ford End-of-Summer Saving Event”
Limited-time special pricing on select Ford models
Compare offers to find the lowest price here:
(Use the link above to view this message in your browser)
message id 4335021
Click that link (which I have obfuscated so it goes nowhere) and you will be taken to the website of iMotors.com:
The spam email was from “Ford,” so this particular page focuses on Ford vehicles, but you can select any make and model, and I’m sure the “affiliate marketer” has pages for every brand which they blast out on a daily basis.
So, let’s put in some bogus information here – notice that the phone number and the email are both for the Federal Trade Commission. Enver Hoxha was the communist dictator of Albania for decades.
That should generate some interesting emails and phone calls at FTC headquarters. Notice that by submitting your information, you agree to be called, robo-called, emailed, texted, etc. by anyone and everyone in the universe.
So what did I get for submitting my information?
That’s right: Nothing. Even if I select my make and model on this page, and click “Search,” I still get the same result. Nothing.
But wait, there’s more.
Now you get to give them a mailing address, so that your junk mail will increase by a factor of 100.
But don’t stop now! There are more deals ahead!
Look at all this information they want you to hand them, including your birth date and social security number.
NEVER GIVE OUT THIS INFORMATION TO RANDOM WEBSITES!
That’s not just advice, that’s a command. Just don’t ever do it. You’re inviting identity thieves like a porch lamp invites moths.
We don’t know how it would be possible for anyone to hate spam more than we do. In the same breath, we are aware of the challenges and inconveniences associated with identity theft. As a result:
- Your information will never be sold, traded, given away or otherwise divulged to anyone, and we do not purchase names from other companies.
- We do not keep any financial data (i.e. credit card numbers) on file.
- We do not buy information or names from others.
- We do not advertise by spamming. Ever.
Unfortunately many businesses do not subscribe to such policies, and you can be guaranteed that anything you respond to in your email that was unsolicited or from a company you have never done business with will result in an even greater flood of spam, or possibly criminal misuse of your information.
Be careful out there.
The Old Wolf has spoken.