The Simon Ashton hacker hoax, spreading via email

Graham Cluley
@gcluley

A colleague from Sophos’s finance department came down to my desk this morning. It’s always a bit scary when someone visits you from the top floor – and I worried for a moment that maybe he wanted to know if I’d charged the life-size Doctor Who cutouts I have surrounding me on expenses..

But actually he wanted to know if I could shed any light on an email he had received:

Here’s the full text of the email:

THIS IS NO JOKE

IF A PERSON CALLED SIMON ASHTON (SIMON25@HOTMAIL.CO.UK ) CONTACTS YOU THROUGH EMAIL DON’T OPEN THE MESSAGE. DELETE IT BECAUSE HE IS A HACKER!!

TELL EVERYONE ON YOUR LIST BECAUSE IF SOMEBODY ON YOUR LIST ADDS HIM THEN YOU WILL GET HIM ON YOUR LIST. HE WILL FIGURE OUT YOUR ID COMPUTER ADDRESS, SO COPY AND PASTE THIS MESSAGE TO EVERYONE EVEN IF YOU DONT CARE FOR THEM AND FAST BECAUSE IF HE HACKS THEIR EMAIL HE HACKS YOUR MAIL TOO!!!!!….

Anyone-using Internet mail such as Yahoo, Hotmail, AOL and so on. This…

Read more in my article on the Naked Security website.

Found this article interesting? Follow Graham Cluley on Twitter to read more of the exclusive content we post.


Graham Cluley is a veteran of the anti-virus industry having worked for a number of security companies since the early 1990s when he wrote the first ever version of Dr Solomon's Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows. Now an independent security analyst, he regularly makes media appearances and is an international public speaker on the topic of computer security, hackers, and online privacy. Follow him on Twitter at @gcluley, or drop him an email.