Spot the fraud? | Forum

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billyHill Moderator
billyHill Dec 7 '15
This is a test that will only give you a 100% score if you get them all right !!


I got 5 out of 7 correct, and the ones I missed were real messages and I marked them as phishing ( fake) ones....  It is a UK site, so those in the UK may have an unfair advantage ( but maybe those of us that know zero about UK banks have the advantage, you never know)....

9:16AM GMT 02 Dec 2015

Comments155 Comments

Fraud emails used to be far easier to spot, often containing spelling mistakes and gramatical errors.

You knew that the Nigerian prince or oil merchant millionaire was never going to leave you their life savings and lots of scam attempts were caught by spam filters.

However, fraudsters are getting more sophisticated - and better at proofreading. "Phishing" emails can pass through spam filters into inboxes, seemingly from familiar companies that you do genuine business with and addressing customers personally when requesting a confirmation of personal details.

Unknowing victims are also being targeted via text message, arguably a more personal approach and harder to spot.

Have a look and see if you can tell the genuine messages from the fake ones.

The Forum post is edited by billyHill Dec 7 '15
wind090 Dec 8 '15

I got 4 right. The ones I got wrong I labeled as scam. With those it was hard to know if they could be right as it were messages which would usually appear if I had made an action before. So from my point of view, if I dont do such an action, but recieve something like that to me it is a scam and if I'm in doubt I do contact my bank the ancient way to confirm that...   

Having noticed the spams to be spams is  good to me. Labeling some of the real ones as spams seems not that dangerous to me unless my bank usually will send a old fashioned letter in that cases!   

billyHill Moderator
billyHill Dec 8 '15
You are right Wind. It is better to think it is a scam, and have it be a real alert than it is a scam, and think it is real.

The fact is if it really comes from your bank ( other financial institution), you can also call them and verify if the message is real or not. ( note I did say "call them", not them call you).

I have one bank that sends me e-statements that always PUTS ALL CAPS IN THE SUBJECT LINE OF THE EMAIL TELLING ME "YOUR STATEMENT IS READY".

I've written to them at least twice now asking them to use proper English, that their emails about statements appears to be a phishing scam, or Nigerian 419 scam just due to the ALL CAPS subject line..... but they don't care, or don't listen. Maybe they have a Nigerian working in the IT department and he/she thinks it is normal to use ALL CAPS in a business email.... I don't know..
wind090 Dec 8 '15

Yes, that's how it works! Better be always on alert!

...and remember, those guys usually get you through your greediness! I don't really want to know how many of us handed over their bank data, waiting for that jackpot they won in a lottery they never took part!

The Forum post is edited by wind090 Dec 8 '15
coloradosweetheart Dec 8 '15
I got 4 right as well.  I incorrectly identified two as fake and one as real.
wind090 Dec 9 '15
One as real? If they not already emptied your bank account, now you're at least in their mailing list and will recieve at least 100 special offers for Viagra and stuff per day!  
coloradosweetheart Dec 9 '15


The one I mistakenly thought was real was the one asking the recipient to call them.  I would have still been on guard over the telephone.  However, they would have my phone number to send me special offers for penis enlargement. 

wind090 Dec 10 '15
I once had such a guy calling me. They sometimes look through the phonebook and according to your name conclude on your age. So they (here in Germany often Turkish or Ex-Jugoslavian people who grew up here, but now are back in their home countries) maybe thought I would already be in retirement. They called me, trying to sell me a magazine subscription. They (or he) had an Austrian accent (as they grew up here, they are good in imitating that). He told me I would have won 80000 €! But to get them I would need a subscription of one of his publishing companiy's magazines.      He also asked me for my bank account to send the money. I gave him something wrong. He then said he checked it and everything would be correct!    Then he told me his collegue would call me for the magazine subscription later. After ten minutes the same guy, now as his collegue, called me and gave me a sentence I should say exactly the same words he told me. I just ruined his nerves for about half an hour, always saying something else, mostly adding the part that the contract only would be valid after they had sent me 80000 € to my bank account.  That guy got really angry, threatening me with the police (those guys like to use the police in Germany as most people associate this with safety, law and order), trying to force me to sign that contract. By then I turned the game around claiming I was from the police and that the collegues would thank for his help as they now had his number and real location!     He never called me back...   
Quarnicus Jan 11 '16
I got 4 , mainly because every email looks suspicious.....lol
elizabeth1 Jan 13 '16
I got 6 out of 7. I think I'm much better in assessment of bank messages than with human :(
The Forum post is edited by elizabeth1 Jan 13 '16
cod1964 Jul 8 '16
i got 5 out of 7
Joan03 Jul 14 '16
Thanks for sharing! They are good to know. I got 5 right out of 7.
davemac Oct 24 '16
5 out of 7 too, but the real ones I got wrong are so much like fakes they deserve to be ignored or flagged as fakes because the banks that sent them aren't helping are they?
Kimo Dec 21 '16
Yes they getting better
jetfuelguy Feb 9 '17
I've seen other sites rife with scams, and then the follow up emails to go with it. Just go forth with a bucket of salt, skepticism is helpful too.
nick_tricky_guy Jun 5 '17
Great topic and great site.. Thank you!!
servicedogtrainer Nov 13 '17
I must get at least 10 phishing emails a week.  Some of them are from banks I have never done business with, others are just plain scammers that you can see right through.   We also get phony recorded calls from someone representing themselves as the Internal Revenue Service with threats to proceed against you with 100% collection if you don't call them immediately.  I'm sure that must scare some poor folks out of their socks.  The truth is that the IRS will never conact you by phone or email.  They only send letters.  I can only imagine how many have been conned out of their savings by scams like these.
The Forum post is edited by servicedogtrainer Nov 13 '17
Willi Jan 9
I wish, I could have taken that test, but it never loaded. I suspect, it is flash based, and most cell phones do not support flash. 

billyHill Moderator
billyHill Jan 10
I double checked the page and test on that page to make sure the links were still there. it did take about 4 minutes to load the test after the page appeared, but it finally did appear. it may be a flash type of thing, but it had a small p in it as it was loading. the p stands for playbuzz and it is the questionnaire software. their pages say they are android and apple friendly.

that was a timed 4 minute loading time. way too long for any page to load, most people will leave a page/site if a minute goes by and they don't have what they came for. Google requires page loads in 2 to 3 seconds if you are going to be a part of their ad-sense program.
The Forum post is edited by billyHill Jan 10


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