I have oft complained here of the appalling lack of imagination being shown by modern spammers, spoofers, and phishers. A child could see through their clumsy attempts to perpetrate whatever it is they hope to perpetrate--money-extraction, usually, but not always--and increasingly one concludes that they're simply not trying.
And then one comes upon something like this in his inbox, as I did but moments ago:
!! Puppies Available For Adoption !!!
Ah! Puppies! Everyone loves puppies! This is going to be good!
And, indeed, early signs are positive. The e-mail purports to come from one "Alex Moore," and, upon opening the message, the innards jibe with that. (How often do we see e-mail whose sender is ostensibly "Joe Doakes" but whose message begins, "My name is Jane Doe..." As indicated above, some of these people aren't trying anymore.) The return address alleges to be from "googlemail.com," which, to my knowledge, doesn't exist (a search for same merely takes one to GMail), so I have to dock a couple of points for that, but so far so good. The actual message:
My name is Alex Moore, I came across your email address through am email surfing Affiliated with the US chamber of Commerce, and My late Grandma was a puppy breeder, She died about 4 months ago and she left 2 Female English Bulldog, before she die, one of the Female puppy recently had a litter 4 puppies, They are so adorable, Due to my job as a Marketer, My job do not allow me to take good care of these babies, I would have love to take care of them myself but due to the nature of my job i does hardly have time for myself, So i want to find them caring & loving parent who will take good care of them and willing to adopt,if you interested in having them, please contact me immediately ,for more details and information.
Hope to read from you soon.
Okay, some considerable slippage here. Alex's apparently arm's-length relationship with the English language tends to undermine his or her credibility. To claim to be a capital-m "Marketer" is over-reaching--unless Alex means he or she owns a market, I would hope that a real-live marketer would know, say, the difference between a comma and a period. ("They are so adorable, Due to my job as a Marketer, My job do not allow me to take good care of these babies," etc.) I know that the students in Marketing classes I've taught over the years would be failed students of Marketing were they to turn in anything resembling the message above.
Here's my advice, Alex: Take over Grandma's puppy mill. "Marketering" isn't gonna work out so well for you.
So, in the end, not as much fun as I'd hoped. Points for originality, however: In more than 15 years online, I have never--never, not once--received a solicitation to buy puppies via the interwebs.
Of course, I have no way of knowing what "Alex's" real game is. It seems pretty unlikely to be puppies, but in this economy, who knows--maybe even the puppy mills are having a tough time of it. I suspect that, were I to follow up (and isn't it refreshing that there are no clickable links in the message itself? To follow up would be to hit "reply"...how charming!), it would develop that the puppies are all gone but that "Alex" has some other fantabulous opportunity for me.
Or it may just be some spammer's or phisher's way to find valid e-mail addresses: You send out the "adorable puppies" message, someone replies, and bingo! you have a valid address for whatever your nefarious real purpose is.
Or it could be puppies. We'll never know.