I’m sure all of you get spam like me, in fact email spam is so integrated into our daily lives that I think if I didn’t get a bunch of spam emails I’d think something was up. This entry isn’t about how spam lords get our email addresses, or viruses received (I’m a Mac guy anyway), or malware, it’s about getting fooled even though we know technology like the back of our hands. What spam emails cause you to read them and click rather than delete automatically? Have you been fooled? Who fools you?
Here’s what emails normally fool me:
Intelligent eBay Spams
Back a few weeks ago my puppy chewed up my girlfriend’s Movado watch box and she was pretty upset. I hopped on eBay and quickly bought a box that a nice woman in Texas was selling, but since I haven’t used eBay in awhile it slipped my mind that I had won the auction. A few days later, I received an “Unpaid Item Dispute” email from eBay alerting me to my wicked ways, so I clicked through on the link and bam, fake URL pretending to be eBay. I’d been fooled! Funny enough, after I sorted out all the payment details with the real seller, I received about 10-15 more Unpaid Item Dispute emails, with items like DSLR Cameras and Navy Blue Abercrombie Tee-Shirts, both of which seem like the type of stuff I might buy. Damn those spammers know me well.
Non-specific Subject Lines
Most spam emails I receive have subject lines like “Buy OEM Software” or “WINNING NOTIFICATION FOR CATEGORY…”, but some spam emails I get just have subject lines like “what’s up” or “hey you know what?” and they always burn me. Between friends I rarely use capitalization in my emails, so lowercase subject lines make me think they’re from somebody I know….. blast!
Out of every bank-related spam email I get, I get spammed from fake Washington Mutual banks the most. I have spam filters setup in Apple Mail to automatically delete anything that has the phrase Washington Mutual in it, which takes care of the spam problem. Unfortunately for Washington Mutual bank, that also means that I will never be a customer because I’d have to un-set my WAMU deletion preferences and deal with every WAMU email as though it could be something real and important, which I don’t have time for.
So what fools you?