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Anatomy of a Myspace Scam

Tuesday, February 28th, 2006

It is pretty hard to not know what myspace is by now. The last figure I read a few days ago said their user base rounded 57 million. Just in case you aren't one of these 57m and have no clue wtf I'm talking about, myspace.com is a "place for friends." Basically it's an online community where you can chat with friends, meet new people, talk some shit or do whatever you want. It's very popular with the high school/college crowd.

Since I run a network at a school, I quickly found out about myspace by looking through website logs. For a while it was the most popular site at school, until I had to block it at the request of teachers. But I still had the chance to look at some of the profile pages for people at school. They were all terrible. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying I'm a great or even good web designer, but even I know you shouldn't put text on a busy background that is only a couple shades off from the font color. Having to highlight the text on a webpage just to read it should be a clue to these people. Anyway I actually had trouble finding a myspace profile that wasn't horrendous. You can check out the discussion on my other site: http://evilserv.com/forum/?id=1535.

So I joined Myspace and tried to see if I could make a decent profile. Here is my Myspace page. There is nothing there and it's still pretty terrible. A couple of days after I joined I got a message from a user named "Norma."

Hi. I'm surfing this site using my girl friends' account. So, I want you to know that this account isn't mine, but my girl friends. She just showed me this site, so I don't have my own account yet. She told me to surf around on her account, and see if I like the site.

I must say that this site seems pretty fun so far. I had fun looking through your profile too. So I felt like writing you and letting you know that, and saying hi. So where should I start? I totally feel like a newbie at this meeting new people thing. I have been single for about a year, so that might be why. lol... I had a really bad break up about a year ago and decided to take some time off and do stuff for "me". But now I think its time to meet someone again. I dont think that I am ready for another relationship, so what I am looking for is a good friendship. You know what I mean... Someone cool, who can spend time with me, hang out, go dancing, just having fun. And sometime, maybe even sharing some intimate moments. So, I guess some folks call that having friendship with some additional benefits. lol!

So, where should we start? I am Kristen... My email address is kristenmarks82 at yahoo. Email me directly so that I am certain to get your message. Since this is my friends account, I might not get messages through her profile. She told me to create a profile of my own if I really like the site. I just might. I have pic that I will send you. I have blue eyes, with blonde hair. People tell me that I am attractive, so I guess I will tell you what they say. I have a feeling that we will get along great.

- KRISTEN -
This was just screaming scam, but I figured I'd play along and see what happens. So the next day I created a yahoo.com email address and emailed "her".
From: jjjjshabbadoo@yahoo.com
To: kristenmarks82@yahoo.com
Subject: hey kristen

Hey Kristen

I did receive your message thank you. I'm glad you enjoyed looking at my profile and that you decided to contact me.
So tell me a little about your self. What do you do for a living? How old are you? Does the "82" in your email address mean you were born in 1982? What do you like to do for fun? Are you a resident of Rochester?

You mentioned you had a picture you could send me, I would really like to see a picture of you.

You mentioned not having your own myspace account. I think you should join, it seems pretty cool and you won't have to use your friend Norma's account.

Looking forward to hearing from you

Joe
This was on Sunday morning, but "she" didn't get back to me until Monday lunchish.
From: kristenmarks82@yahoo.com
To: jjjjshabbadoo@yahoo.com
Subject: Re: hey kristen

Hi Joey ! Hey you found me! I was a little worried you wouldn't be able to :P so, how are you? I am ok.. I'm sneaking a email in at work before my boss comes back in, so sorry if it's a little short! I promise to write more later :)

So I promised you some pics... :P well I will have to send you some of me when I get home (don't have the pics here at work). In the meantime you can check out my personal homepage. It is kind of playground while I'm taking this intro to HTML class, kind of like my blog page. Here's the link: http://www.honesthost5mb.com/kristenspage It's not much yet but it's getting there. hehe

So tell me more about yourself, are you a work to live or live to work kinda person? What are you looking for in a girl? Do you like myspace? I think I'll make a profile soon, it's free right? and you can add your own HTML? That would be cool.. What are you doing tonight? I'm just going out with the girl friends after work, probably find a bar or someplace to hang out. We usually try to get together at least once a week and get drunk. HEHE! (J/K on the getting drunk part, wejust have fun)

Oh, hey... My Birthday is 1 week from today. Maybe if we hit it off, we can have our first date on my Birthday? That would be really cool, and romantic as well. Well, think about it and let me know if you might want to do that.

Anyways, enough with the 20 questions right? oh, I prefer to chat on IM, its more personal you know? Do you have AIM? im kriskat225 on there, msg me sometime ok?

Well I should log off and get some work done.. Write back soon! and take care!

xoxo ~ Kristen
Notice how "she" didn't answer a single question I asked? I went to her HTML class website (http://www.honesthost5mb.com/kristenspage) and wasn't that surprised to find a few pics and a box to allow you to sign up to see the rest of her pics. If you look at the source code of the page it is pretty obvious that someone in an intro-html class did NOT write it. If it weren't for all the <font> tags I would say it is too clean, but even with them it is too clean and accurately indented. Check out the code MS Word or Frontpage generates for you sometime, it'll blow your mind.

At first I thought this was just a ploy to get my email address so it'll get added to a bunch of spam lists but after seeing this page I guess they expect me to also give them my credit card number too. I was curious to see how well this scam was coded and punched in a few relatively-bogus credit card numbers but it wouldn't let me in. Bummer. It's ok, if you search google for "myspace scam" this same thing with a few variations pops up. If you look hard enough you can actually find the naked pictures of this chick without having to give them your credit card.

I wonder how many people actually fall for this stuff

Comments (7) Subscribe

Elaine
#1 - Mar 1, 2006 at 6:11 PM
I'm guessing my page was complete crap...lol. busy background and light colored text. oh well, what the hell do i know
Cheryl
#2 - Mar 1, 2006 at 6:52 PM
After I got done laughing my ass off here. Sounds like she wants to date you! Ha ha. Boy I feel old now.
joe
#3 - Mar 1, 2006 at 8:02 PM
Elaine...your page is great! Just as long as you don't have music or video start up when the page loads.

Cheryl...I'm sure I could've gotten a date with her if I promised her my credit card number.
Gate-c
#4 - Mar 16, 2006 at 4:17 PM
What a sad state we live in when a scam, this thought out, still made us question it’s legitimacy.

I questioned the broken community college and after a google, I found this. So sad we google people before trusting them. Thanks.

I’m in Columbus, Ohio and so was her friend’s myspace Profile.

Other searches shows this has been around a long time. You would think the scammer would have evolved the message and made a new story besides the fake college HTML class. I wouldn’t have found this without it…
joe
#5 - Mar 17, 2006 at 10:34 AM
"So sad we google people before trusting them."

I totally agree, but with so many people out there trying to scam everyone there really isn't any other choice.
Rocco
#6 - Mar 30, 2006 at 10:39 AM
Yeah. She did it again. Nice play along though.
I ended this one quickly By saying I was glad you enjoyed my profile even though I don't have one But I'm really interested in you why don't you give me your # maybe we could start w/ phone sex!!
joe
#7 - Mar 30, 2006 at 12:26 PM
HAHA who knows...maybe "she" will.

I'm kind of disappointed I haven't gotten any other scams like this recently, it's fun to play with these people.

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