Today I received an email from an obvious Scammer that was so typical of somebody intent on trying to cause disruption within our community that I thought I'd write a quick blog post about it, and for those unsure, what you can do to arm yourself against this sort of thing happening to you.
Here is the message I received:
"Hello My Dear,
how are you today i hope all is fine, My name is Miss peace,i saw your profile today at seniorchatters.co.uk and became intrested in you,i will also like to know more about you,and i want you to send an email to my email address so i can give you my picture for you to know whom i am.Here is my email address (firstname.lastname@example.org) believe we can move from here!I am waiting for your mail to my email address above.
What You Should Do If You Receive A Message Like This:
Use Scammer Watch to report it immediately! The more information you provide about a suspect message or profile the quicker and easier it is for a Site Admin to investigate your report and remove a Scammers profile. A good tip would be to copy the message in its entirety by holding down your left mouse button at the start of the message and drag it over the message so its completely highlighted. Then, right click on the message and click the copy option to copy the highlighted text to your computers clipboard. As shown below:
You can then easily report the Scammer by pasting the message into the Scammer Watch input box As shown below:
Important Safety Warning
You should NEVER divulge any personal information about yourself to any other member asking for more than what is displayed on your profile, and you should NEVER reply to any message that you are unsure about, especially anything matching the style of writing above that blatantly asks you to reply outside of Senior Chatters.
What You Can Do To Prevent Messages Like This Being Sent To You
It is possible to filter messages that are sent to you. Either to allow ALL members (default) to be able to send you a private message whether they are on your friends list or not. Allow ONLY friends to be able to send you private messages, or you can even customise this further by actually specifying who can and who can't private message you. To configure your mailbox privacy settings go to:
My Account > Settings > Message Privacy which is located at the top of any page.
Remember though, if you do modify your message privacy settings you WILL be restricting members being able to private message you. Not ideal. Therefore, I would advise you leave this setting alone unless you are constantly being messaged by Scammers (extremely unlikely) or you want to add finer granular control over who can private message you.
Fortunately, thanks to the vigilance of our community Scammers are dealt with very quickly indeed and measures are in place to keep these parasites creating new profiles. If we all work together by reporting anything bogus or suspect we can continue to keep Senior Chatters a vibrant, safe and fun over 50's community.
All the best