Christmas pump-and-dump stock spam

Ho ho no.

Graham Cluley
Graham Cluley
@[email protected]

Stock spam

I’ve seen a deluge of spam today, and it feels like a return to yesteryear.

That’s because the spam is stock spam – sent with the intention of encouraging the masses to buy cheap shares in a particular company.

The reason? The scamps who sent the email are hoping that the value of the shares will be “pumped” up, so they can “dump” their own holdings for a profit.

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In this particular case, the spam claims that King, the makers of the more-addictive-and-dangerous-than-crystal-meth Candy Crush game, are planning to buy a games development company called AppSwarm.

The messages, which have a variety of subject lines inviting you to buy the stock before Christmas, have so far contained the same content:

Appswarm needs your attention. This is the only stock you need to buy today. Keep on reading to find out why..

Appswarm (ticker: SWRM) is a mobile games developer that has built some of the most popular games on the planet.

The games have been downloaded more than 100 million times and the company is planning to launch 5 new titles in January 2017 (next month).

SWRM is extremely undervalued and there are serious rumors circulating that the maker of Candy Crush (King, a multi billion dollar company) is about to buy it out for $1.17 per share before Christmas.

At this moment SWRM is trading at just pennies but a buy out from King will automatically send it to over $1 in a matter of minutes.

This is your chance to buy a stock just days before a major acquisition and stand to gain more than 1,500% just days before Christmas.

We used to see a lot of stock spam back way back when, but I don’t tend to see it that often in my spamtraps these days.

It should go without saying that it’s not wise to make investment decisions based upon some anonymous scoundrel spamming you out of the blue.


Graham Cluley is an award-winning keynote speaker who has given presentations around the world about cybersecurity, hackers, and online privacy. A veteran of the computer security industry since the early 1990s, he wrote the first ever version of Dr Solomon's Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows, makes regular media appearances, and is the co-host of the popular "Smashing Security" podcast. Follow him on Twitter, Mastodon, Threads, Bluesky, or drop him an email.

3 comments on “Christmas pump-and-dump stock spam”

  1. Brett

    Funny thing I just got this email minutes before I read this post.

    1. Mixta · in reply to Brett

      Me too. Bypassed Baracuda and was in my inbox mulitple times.

  2. Michael Ponzani

    I only saw one company that actually went up with these things, but you had to watch it on a daily basis. It was a fashion company. I knew it would go up . If I had the money I would have played their game. It went from somewhere around $2.35/sh to $25.00/sh. I would have exited after $20.00 I would have had to follow it every day. It took 3-4 weeks to jump up. It really did appear on People, Elle, etc. It was a split from a major brand. It was split 4:1 .to $6.25/sh then dropped to nothing. I have done some photography in my day. I wanted to do fashion photography, so I have kept reading about thses things. So I knew. Now I have toheck the rat trap which just snapped.

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