Technology

Technology ~ Cyberia
Joe Jerk’s amazing offer

Jack Kapica | December 21

Globe and Mail – How many e-mail messages have I received from poor Maryam Abacha?

Judging by the number of times she has sent me e-mail, she apparently has billions of dollars left to her by her late husband, Nigerian dictator Sani Abacha, who in real life died while disporting himself with three Indian prostitutes.

more after the jump

If she has that much money, Nigeria must be a very wealthy country indeed.

Maryam Abacha is a real name, even if her money laundering scheme sounds too good to be true, which it is. Much less convincing are some of the other senders’ names that spammers put on their messages — some are truly bizarre, a quality necessary to avoid increasingly effective spam filters.

What amazes me is that people will give their money to patently fictional people with outrageous names. Even the body of the messages is often silly: By the time spammers finish adjusting their strategies to fool the spam filters, their messages are so bent out of shape it’s a wonder anyone can possibly take them seriously.

I collect these names (it’s an eccentricity — leave me alone), and I like to select the best for a year-end wrap-up, with a top-10-names list chosen by one of my (very real) favourite names, Tahirah Shadforth.

For instance, among those offering me Viagra this year were Lengthen Excerpting, Avrom Alias, Eula Shook, Racketeering Motors, Presumably Cahoots, Bunkum Splotched, Scurf Pathogen, Barbered Chapt, Ambrosia Triplett, Pole Suspiciously, Phosphorous Thundercloud and (wow) Joe Jerk.

Trustworthy-sounding bunch, no?

This year, the U.S. warned citizens not to buy drugs from on-line Canadian pharmacies because the drugs might not be safe. Spammers leapt into the fray, suggesting people should instead put their trust in names such as Ovaries Secreter, Emm Zcacsog, Bella Pxolc, Candida Outlaw, Capote Dogie, Macon Expel, Exhibitionism Phoneys, Tillman Unscrew, Nuptials Overgenerous, Letdowns Gastritis, Dionysius Swindall, Slugged Shindig, Concessions Burgles, Fikriyya Gurney and Shea Snay.

I’m not surprised that Gooey Honeyshot or Swashbucklers Download tried to sell me porn. But others brought me up short: Exhale Live, Childbear Mcpherson, Nutmeat Letup, Bleariest Oversell, Police V. Runt and Sweetish Procreative. What a price to pay for canned thrills.

A number use phony subject lines. Meadows Dan said his message was about bipolar disorder, but it was really offering a university degree in two weeks. Darlene Huynh offered me “ectopic pinscher neoprene,” which was identified in the body of the letter as an aphrodisiac. Cyriel Kelvin caught my eye with “Are you interesting?” only to deliver another Nigerian scam (“Hello, Dear” indeed).

Maritza Bedeaf told me I had a parcel waiting for me but failed to mention where, Courtships Pinter wanted to “palpate” me, Trinity Eastman wanted to tell me she is a bored housewife, Concepcion Wolf had a mortgage for me, Moses Nroqrd and Hilary Phhissei wanted to sell me really cheap Rolex watches, Drenched Trajectory offered folk wisdom (“Surprise surprise! Even the lion has to defend himself against flies”), Embrittle Roberson and Euphemism Hayes wanted me to join “fun” adult groups, Aslant Abases had some cheap software, Dr. Rehoboth Peters wanted to get me into a deal about “crud oil,” Prince Vogt offered me a gay dating service featuring “sex after death,” and Wanton Burns said he could get me a date for “tonight.”

Scammers included Mrs. Joke Willaims, Benson Kuku, Roomfuls Tabloids, Moveable Heckler and Gorge Profanation.

Some e-mail includes irrelevant text to foil spam filters. So Staint Isaiah ended up sounding like an extraterrestrial poet, because his e-mail started with: “Lcatechumen say outzz Huddersfield been comte mean overfold hyrax.Yplacoderm end sfbg impeccant see Rurik two knar triserial.”

Globe and Mail

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