I’d like to buy the world a clue

Graham Cluley
Graham Cluley
@[email protected]

Email scams claiming to come from Coca Cola are nothing new. But today Clu-blog reader Kevin forwarded me a message he had received in his inbox which was a little different.

The email Kevin received claims to come from the “COCA-COLA PAYMENT OFFICE LONDON” with a subject line of “Urgent”.

In an apparent attempt to waltz past anti-spam filters, however, it puts the meat of its message about the recipient having won a lottery into an attached graphic file – “CLAIMS FORM.JPG”.

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If you were foolish enough to pursue this any further you would find that the form asks you for your full name (including your maiden name if you are a married woman), your address, your passport number and full date of birth.

Of course, I shouldn’t need to tell you that you haven’t really won a lottery, and these messages don’t come from Coca Cola.

The scammers behind con-tricks like this are all designed to let criminals steal information about the victim’s bank account or demand a ‘handling fee’.

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.

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