Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Sorry, 'Paula,' but you're not being honest

Don't feel bad for people who send you messages like this: They're not friends stranded overseas. They're spammers who can't even spell their fake name consistently. This message didn't originate from AOL; it came from Don't reply, don't be fooled by messages like this.

From: "Paula Jayne Winnig"
Date: December 30, 2009 3:33:38 AM PST
Subject: Get back to me pls


I really don't mean to inconvenience you right now but I made a quick trip to the UK for the holidays, and I lost a bag which contains my passport and credit cards. I know this may sound odd, but it all happened very fast. I've been to the US embassy and they're willing to help me fly without my passport but I just have to pay for my ticket and settle some bills. Right now I'm out of cash plus i can't access my bank without my credit card over here. I have contacted them but they need more verification. I'm just gonna have to plead with you to lend me some funds right now? I'll pay back as soon as I get home. I need to get on the next available flight home.

Please reply as soon as you get this message so I can forward the details as to where to send the funds. You can reach me via the hotel's desk phone if you can, the numbers are, 011447024065511 or 011447024064567 You can also email me via my googlemail, as I can easily access it here

I await your response...

Paula Jayne Winnig


  1. thanks for putting this up. I was not sure about my friend sending me this exact same message but decided to google the first phone number and up came this site with the message. It appears they are going into the aol accounts and then going from there. Thanks for the help in saving me running around.

  2. I am the real person mentioned in this email and I thank you for posting this so more people will not be fooled. I have a lot of lovely friends who have been calling me non-stop to see if I am okay. I am fine. Someone clearly hacked into not only my aol account but my facebook and collected a lot of nearly believeable information about me. I am truly sorry for any inconvenience this has caused anyone. I am grateful to all the caring people who have called me and others both willing to help should I actually have been in need and were concerned about the nature of this scam. Whatever you do...DO NOT SEND ME MONEY! I am fine and not in London!


  3. This just happened to me too. They hacked into an old Hotmail account that I stopped using. I still don't understand how they got into it -- it had a decent password. Also, I don't know if they are taking the time to sift through all my messages in that account to look for sensitive data. They deleted all the old email and contacts, so I can't confirm that I didn't have any sensitive data in there.

  4. This same scam was run on a gmail customer in southwest Tennessee early today. Note that the postal code resolves rather neatly to the British Heart Foundation in the ex-Carreras building (maybe related to one of the Emap companies in that same building?) but the header data resolved to a location inside Russia (which I think is where the scam is originating)

    Question would be 'how are the funds picked up' if sent via Western Union to Greater London House...

  5. a friend of mine had his email hacked into also he has an msn account. in his email it said to contact him at his yahoomail account he doesnt have a yahoomail account watch out also if there is any bank info in your email they will try getting money from your bank accounts too

  6. My email was hacked yesterday with this same email message, I think we should seek legal action against the people responsible for this fraudulent act. I am glad most of my friends were aware that I couldn't possibly be asking for money just like that, but it still worried many of my friends. We should spread the voice! Thanks for keeping this blog.
    I reply to this email from another account they wanted me to send the money through Western Union in the UK, and they gave me an address, can I do anything with that Data?

  7. Thanks for this info. My hotmail server was hacked a week ago and I was concern about this sudden SOS email. This greatly help me avoid being spammed.

    Thank you.