Cyber Monday Briefing: More like Ultimate Spam Day

Discussion in 'In The News' started by roundabout, Nov 28, 2011.

  1. roundabout

    roundabout VIP

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    Cyber Monday Briefing: More like Ultimate Spam Day

    Cyber Monday is the biggest online shopping day of the year, when all those groggy-eyed Thanksgiving and Black Friday revelers take to their computers — usually while at work — to kill some time and buy some things.

    But the day is also notorious for another thing: spam.

    I’m not talking about the processed luncheon meat my friend’s mom used to serve us cold and over hot rice and beans. (The rice and beans would heat the meat; it was delicious.) I’m talking about worthless and time-wasting emails that get read by about 1 in 1 million people who receive them.

    Bad enough Groupon has spawned this wave of copycat ‘daily deal’ spam letters that clog my inbox each morning. It seems that today, on Cyber Monday, every store I’ve ever shopped at online since 1999 has emailed me some sort of offer.

    Twelve K-kups starting at $9.99?! Sorry, Costco still does better. Free shipping at Pottery Barn? I’ll skip the $1,500 end table, which I guess would save me about $50 in shipping, and buy a $150 end table instead; thanks.

    Discounted pet meds for the family cat, Ginger? Ginger’s been dead for five years, people.

    A Groupon daily deal for me last week was for a discounted sit-down at a restaurant and social club in Carle Place. Seriously, Carle Place. That’s about an hour and 20 minutes away. And this stock sells for how much?

    Watch Out For Ridiculous Cyber Monday 'Deals'

    Cyber Monday is the biggest online-shopping day of the year, so it should come as no surprise that opportunistic online scammers have unleashed a slew of tricks to steal your hard-earned money.

    The security firm Sophos spotted spam emails today (Nov. 28) offering door-busting discounts on must-have Cyber Monday gadgets like iPads and MacBooks as well as Adobe software like Photoshop and Acrobat. One email, from "Overstocked-Auctions" and titled "Cyber Monday: BREAKING NEWS — iPad 2," claimed to be selling the Apple tablet for only $17, a whopping price reduction of $482.

    Cyber Monday iPads: $43www.NoMoreRack.com/iPad
    Get 32GB Apple iPads for $43.20. 1 Per Customer. Limited Quantities.

    Cyber Monday Laptopsdealspl.us/Laptop_deals
    Laptops from $150 this Cyber Monday Top Brand Laptops on Sale

    JCPenneyâ„¢ Official SiteJCPenney.com/OfficialSite
    Shop 40,000+ Cyber Monday Deals. Free Shipping on Orders $25+
    Ads by Google

    "IPads, MacBooks & more up to 90% off. Penny auctions are the craze sweeping the nation," the email read.

    Penny auctions are legal, but their online versions can be very deceptive. Entrants must pay fees for the right to bid on offered items. Since the bids go up in increments of only one cent at a time, bidders quickly run out of allotted bidding rights and must pay more for the chance to bid again. Hence, an iPad that sells for "only" $17 will have cost each bidder — not only the auction winner, but the losers as well — much more than that, easily offsetting the auctioneer's costs.

    If you don't want to get swept up in this 'craze,' don't enter penny auctions and don't purchase anything from companies that use spam to sell their products. If you absolutely need to take advantage of today's online savings, visit a reputable online store and stay away from auction sites or other Web stores offering too-good-to-be-true discounts.

    Source:
    http://www.securitynewsdaily.com/ridiculous-cyber-monday-spam-1362/
     
  2. afc_pmc

    afc_pmc New Member

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    Be really careful with this frank, don't assume if a network gives you a creative that its ok, even tho they will be sued before you are, its a habit you need to get in to, protect your own ass. Name dropping big brands helps open rates, but they can eat you alive if they want, and trust me when I tell you, they didn't give permission to use their name. The company who made the offer might be overseas which is why they are so daring, and if they can't go after them, they will go after the mailer. 2 huge rules are broken in that subject you just said you dropped:

    1. Using a brand name without permission.
    2. Making a misleading claim - sometimes misleading is just being tricky, which is already bad enough, but straight out saying prices they don't offer is pretty borderline with fraud.

    Just be careful and remember you have to watch yourself, the networks and advertisers usually are more restrictive then the mailer (when they have good intentions) but NEVER assume they have these good intentions or you will be the one who gets screwed.
     
  3. critical

    critical VIP

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    Yeah Frank, afcpmc is right. I have seen first hand a customer in our collocation get literally ripped apart by the FTC and a group of lawyers for doing almost the very same thing.
    Before you promote a "too good to be true" item, it's best to not throw caution into the wind and protect your own self. The Internet is full of offers which pose no risk. Why not run with those?
     
  4. DKPMO

    DKPMO VIP

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    I think everybody would be interested in seeing details of what happened in this case, without any identifying info of course.
     
  5. FrankD

    FrankD New Member

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    Thanks for the advice guys. You guys make good points. I'm learning this game by trail and error.
     
  6. critical

    critical VIP

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    Well, first off it was a regular customer who is not a mailer type.... the guy and his staff were as legit as they come.
    The mistake they made was to send out a newsletter to their customer base offering a new Toyota CAR for $250.00, paid in full, NEW fully featured etc.... It was a bait and switch type of offer... they only wanted to attract the customers to respond to get leads to people who wanted to buy new cars to sell the leads to a dealership they made a deal with. This got them in bad trouble and they lost their entire business over it because they could not afford the legal fees and such. Bad mistake to do that on their part. They thought of it as an innocent "attractive way to get customers to notice their company" but it ended up sealing their doom.
     
  7. DoldGigga

    DoldGigga VIP

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    Step One:
    Start a shitty "security news" website with the primary intention of spamming visitors with adds for ineffectual security products.

    Step Two:
    Go through the whole DABDA thing, and once you reach A you'll realize that nobody cares who you are and that your website sucks ass.

    Step Three:
    Write an article that tries to present a platitude as something new and exciting, warning hapless idiots that "if it sounds too good to be true it probably is".

    I like alarmist news articles that rely on the "other side" of the coin for gaining a few clicks from some Nth tier search engine, perhaps one owned by McHammer. Sites that push these kind of articles are no better than the shit they're criticizing...and penny auctions have been around for how many years now?

    Penny auctions are popular because people like the chance to win. It's a similar psychology to gambling...it's fun for these people. That is not to say that some penny auction sites are not total scams - but that doesn't mean the penny auction business model is a scam in itself (i.e. like a ponzi scheme). Is it wrong to pay $50-$150 for a chance to win some expensive products? Hell, why not?

    About using trademarks in your email...well, it's definitely frowned upon by the trademark holder but there is a thing called fair use that can be used as an affirmative legal defense (aka justification) if you are referring to a trademark for comparative advertising OR if you are selling a product of that mark...

    That's not to say you wouldn't incur high legal costs if you were sued and opted to defend yourself. This is why you shouldn't be operating without at least an LLC, so if things go south you can accept a default judgment then do a bankruptcy on the LLC. It's the smart way to do things from a business standpoint, and it's probably why owners of popular trademarks do not go after every one of the affiliates who make illicit use of the marks in their promotions.
     
  8. roundabout

    roundabout VIP

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    BAHAHA

    Frank has deleted the incriminating evidence of his massive felony involving a poorly used subject line. The moment he hit the delete key, the attorney general of his state called 100 agents on the case and said "Project FrankD is DEAD, move on". And every post office's FBI WANTED posters were re-printed to no longer include FrankD's mugshot.

    You are a free man Franky Dee... live life to the fullest, and watch those subject lines in the future!
     

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