It has been RichDs experience that, the easiest way to see if an e-mail is a hoax or a fake, is to scroll down to the bottom of the message. Somewhere down there is a sentence that says something like...
" Send this E-mail to EVERYONE on your list. "
" Please forward ! "
Don't forward it.. Delete it and send it off to cyber hell where it belongs. These, " urgent messages " really are nothing but an e-mail farm of sorts. E-mail addresses are worth money and are easily rustled using a hoax.
Here is a prime example my poorly informed cousin sent me, ( 12/03/00 )
" Subject: BILL 602P Date: Mon, 11 Sep 2000 11:25:45 -0500
Subject: Vote NO on Bill 602P
VOTE NO ON Bill 602P!!!!
I guess the warnings were true. Federal Bill 602P 5-cents per E-mail Sent. It figures! No more free E-mail! We knew this was coming!! Bill 602P will permit the Federal Government to charge a 5-cent charge on every delivered E-mail.
Please read the following carefully if you intend to stay online, and continue using E-mail. The last few months have revealed an alarming trend in the Government of the United States attempting to quietly push through legislation that will affect our use of the Internet.
Under proposed legislation, the US Postal Service will be attempting to bill E-mail users out of "alternative postage fees." Bill 602P will permit the Federal Government to charge a 5-cent surcharge on every E-mail delivered, by billing Internet Service Providers at source. The consumer would then be billed in turn by the ISP.
Washington DC lawyer Richard Stepp is working without pay to prevent this legislation from becoming law. The US Postal Service is claiming lost revenue, due to the proliferation of E-mail, is costing nearly $230,000,000 in revenue per year. You may have noticed their recent ad campaign:
. "There is nothing like a letter."
Since the average person received about 10 pieces of E-mail per day in 1998, the cost of the typical individual would be an additional 50 cents a day -- or over $180 per year -- above and beyond their regular Internet costs. Note that this would be money paid directly to the US Postal Service for a service they do not even provide. The whole point of the Internet is democracy and noninterference. You are already paying an exorbitant price for snail mail because of bureaucratic efficiency. It currently takes up to 6 days for a letter to be delivered from coast to coast. If the US Postal Service is allowed to tinker with E-mail, it will mark the end of the "free" Internet in the United States. Our congressional representative, Tony Schnell (R) has even suggested a "$20-$40 per month surcharge on all Internet service" above and beyond the governments proposed E-mail charges.
Note that most of the major newspapers have ignored the story -- the only exception being the Washingtonian - which called the idea of E-mail surcharge "a useful concept who's time has come" (March 6th, 1999 Editorial). > Do not sit by and watch your freedom erode away! Send this to E-mail to EVERYONE on your list, and tell all your friends and relatives write their congressional representative and say "NO" to Bill 602P. It will only take a few moments of your time and could very well be instrumental in killing a bill we do not want.
" Please forward! "
The above, is a spin - off of an Urban Legend that has been floating around for 3 years that I know of.. and it is a total B.S. story.
One thing though..... People are always wondering why they get spam, and the spreading of these hoaxes are one good reason why... This thing my cousin sent had, 41 e-mail addresses on it, ( mine included ) ripe for the plucking by any number of unscrupulous recipients... To do with as they wish.
Think about this the next time you get spam.