The Hoax Museum Blog
Category: Email Hoaxes
The GTC Group Billion Dollar Trust
Posted by The Curator on Tue Jan 17, 2006
Status: Scam Here's an offer that has scam written all over it. The GTC Group (I'm kind of reluctant to link to their website, on the off chance that I'll help send a victim their way, but here it is) claims that if you agree to establish a trading account in their name (no money or fees required!), they will pay you, and 5000 other lucky volunteers, $24,000. They're circulating this claim via email. Here's how they explain the deal on their website: Our client is a family trust with $1B to invest. We recently presented them with an investment opportunity to make a return of 18% without risk. Unfortunately, this opportunity involves the…
Potential new risk from mobile phones
Posted by The Curator on Tue Jan 10, 2006
Status: Partially true, partially fake Dipankar Mitra sent me this graphic which is circulating via email, warning of a "Potential new risk from mobile phones." He notes that it's accompanied by a caption that reads: Please use left ear while using cell (mobile), because if you use the right one it will affect brain directly. This is a true fact from Apollo medical team. Please forward to all your well wishers He asks, "Do let me know if it is real or hoax..." Well, the caption is definitely a hoax. I have…
Email Warns of Hidden Camera in Tanning Salons
Posted by The Curator on Wed Nov 30, 2005
Status: Hoax A small British newspaper reports that tanning salons in New Eltham (which, I guess, is a suburb of London) are being targeted by a hoax email warning that hidden cameras are snapping photos of women as they tan. The email is accompanied by "dozens of revealing pictures of naked women using tanning beds, who are obviously unaware they are being photographed." (Two of the pictures are below.) The article continues: Angry women who use tanning beds are circulating the pictures to each other, believing them to be genuine and warning their friends and family not to use the salon. Apparently the candid pictures actually show a tanning salon in California. The…
The Palace of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan
Posted by The Curator on Tue Nov 15, 2005
Status: Email hoax (real pictures, fake caption)Bad: Falling for an email hoax. Worse: Using the hoax as the basis for your presentation to the local city planning commission, thereby displaying your gullibility to the entire public. As reported by the Muncie Star Press (no link), Don Love gets the award for doing the latter. He received an email containing a series of pictures of an opulent estate (shown below), with the caption: In case you're wondering where this hotel is, it isn't a hotel at all. IT IS A HOUSE! It's owned by the family of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the former president of the United Arab Emirates and ruler of Abu-Dhabi.
The Power of Makeup
Posted by The Curator on Mon Nov 14, 2005
Status: Viral email Pasted below is the content of an email that's going around. It's not a hoax, but it deals with issues of camouflage and deception. (It also reminds me of some Before and After pictures that I posted over a year ago.) The subject line of the email is: Never underestimate the power of makeup.
Miss International’s Nanny Speech
Posted by The Curator on Wed Oct 19, 2005
Status: Probably a hoax Last month Precious Lara Quigaman, Miss Philippines, was crowned as the 2005 Miss International. An email now going around relates a story about her answer to a question asked during the final round: Precious Lara Quigaman, the Miss Philippines who took home the 2005 Miss International crown, was asked during the final round the following question: What do you say to the people of the world who have typecasted filipinos as nannies? Precious Lara replied, “I take no offense on being typecasted as a nanny. But i do take offense that the educated people of the world…
Posted by The Curator on Fri Apr 22, 2005
Warning: Graphic. This is from an email going around: A police officer sent this to me. It is not for the faint of heart. If you have a weak stomach, then don't look at the URL. It is a picture of the demise of a suicide jumper taken shortly after he landed. It shows him with his insides now on the outside. You will see the look of horror on the faces of the bystanders. The faces of the bystanders is why I believe this is real.. http://hoaxes.org/images/Jumper.jpg
Posted by The Curator on Tue Apr 05, 2005
Are you soon going to need a license to pick wild mushrooms in Illinois? That was what an email press release that circulated around last week stated. The email claimed that mushroom hunters would have to get a license from the same vendors that sell hunting and fishing licenses, and that revenue from the license sales would benefit biological and archaeological research in Illinois. The email prompted dozens of people to call the Illinois Natural Resources Department to complain. Today a Department spokeswoman, Gayle Simpson, denied that any such licenses were going to be required. In other words, the email was a hoax.
Posted by The Curator on Mon Feb 14, 2005
A new variation of the email tracing hoax has been spotted. Instead of promising that Bill Gates or AOL will send you money if you forward their email, this message promises that you'll get champagne. Here's the email: Greetings Champagne Lovers!! Send this message to 10 people, with a copy to firstname.lastname@example.org Veuve Clicquot France will contact you in order to deliver you a case of champagne in three weeks. They are doing this in order to enlarge their database. It does work and you receive six bottles in 15 days. Salut a tous les amoureux du champagne Unfortunately Veuve Clicquot has already posted a warning message…
Waiting for Mr. Tsunami
Posted by The Curator on Fri Jan 14, 2005
I found this posted in the alt.folklore.urban usenet group: A while before the catastrophe, a local clerk in one of the countries hit by the tsunamis receives a warning note stating "Tsunami will reach you shortly!" - and, in response, sends a welcome crew to the local airport, to welcome and pick up the mysterious "Mr Tsunami", whom he expects to be an unannounced ministerial visitor or inspector. I don't understand why a clerk would have received a message warning him about the tsunami. But I don't think it's worth trying to understand this, since it's obviously just a dumb joke.
Actual Headlines From 2004
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jan 05, 2005
I received an email containing this list of THE YEAR'S BEST [ACTUAL] HEADLINES OF 2004! But, of course, these aren't really headlines from 2004. This list has been going around for at least four years. Check out this competition from 2000 in which people created images to match some of these headlines. Plus, I doubt any of these were ever actual headlines either.Crack Found on Governor's Daughter.Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says.Police Begin Campaign to Run Down Jaywalkers.Iraqi Head Seeks Arms!Is There a Ring of Debris around Uranus?Prostitutes Appeal to Pope.Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over.Miners Refuse to Work after Death.War Dims Hope for Peace.If Strike Isn't Settled Quickly, It May Last Awhile.Red Tape Holds…
Faye Nicole San Juan
Posted by The Curator on Fri Nov 19, 2004
The story of Faye Nicole San Juan has received quite a bit of coverage in the Philippine press, but almost none here in America. Word of Faye Nicole began spreading through the Filipino community around the end of October, via an email titled "Misplaced priorities can mislead a nation." It was all about how the Philippines had supposedly let down 12-year-old Faye Nicole. Faye was a young girl hoping to represent her country in the International Science Quiz in Brisbane, Australia. Her essay on "The Effect of Ionized Radiation on the Philippine Fruit Fly" had won her a place at the competition, but she couldn't afford the airfare, and the Philippine government wouldn't provide…
Posted by The Curator on Wed Nov 03, 2004
Here's a strange email hoax that reportedly is spreading around India: Tonight a rectoscalar wave is passing at 10.25 pm, Indian Standard Time.... This causes damage in mobiles and computers..... So switch off your mobiles and computers at the specified time... This has been published in todays The Hindu paper also.... Keep fwd this message to your friends and loved ones..... Is there even such a thing as a rectoscalar wave? I did a google search and didn't pull up anything. Sure hope that wave doesn't reach America. Or maybe it already did. Maybe that's what caused those unfortunate election results.
Safe and Secure
Posted by The Curator on Fri Oct 08, 2004
Here's an amusing email that's making the rounds: I want to thank all of you! To all my friends and family, Thank you for making me safe, secure, blessed, and wealthy by sending me your chain letters over the last year. Because of your concern: I no longer drink Coca Cola because it can remove toilet stains. I no longer drink Pepsi or Dr Pepper since the people who make these products are atheists who refuse to put "Under God" on their cans. I no longer drink anything out of a can because I will get sick from the rat feces and urine. I no longer use Saran wrap…
Simpsons House Hoax
Posted by The Curator on Mon Oct 04, 2004
According to News.com.au an email has been circulating around Australia claiming that the town of South Morang has built a replica of the house where the Simpsons live. On the cartoon, Homer and Marge live on 742 Evergreen Terrace, and South Morang does have an Evergreen Drive. Apparently many Simpsons' fans have been spotted driving aimlessly around South Morang searching for the house. Unfortunately for these fans, the replica house doesn't exist. The email is a hoax. But if you're a Simpsons fan the place you should actually visit is Portland, Oregon, the boyhood home of Matt Groening, whose streets apparently inspired the names of many Simpsons characters.