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Mail Scammer Targets AOL Users

January 26, 2001

DULLES, VIRGINIA, U.S.A, Jan 26, 2001 (Newsbytes via COMTEX) -- Investigators at America Online [NYSE:AOL] are attempting to track down a suspected scammer who sent e-mail this morning to an as-yet undetermined number of AOL subscribers informing them they had won a prize in a random selection.

The e-mail, which reads, "Congratulations (You've won!)" was posted about 2 a.m. EST this morning and originates with a sender known as "Wooouuuu."

The letter contains the message, "Dear AOL Member, We at AOL are now selecting random user's (sic) to win prizes, and you were one that we picked, we pick 50 members each month! To claim your prize, just Click Here..."

Clicking on the hyperlinked line sends users to a Web page at , which appears to be a legitimate AOL site, sporting the company logo and which is hotlinked to several AOL channels. The message on the page asks winners to submit their screen name and password in order to claim their prize. The information is claimed to be addressed to, AOL's founder and CEO.

However an AOL spokesperson told Newsbytes the company is not running a contest, had no knowledge of the e-mail nor the site and stressed that AOL representatives never ask members for their passwords. She said the information would be passed along to the company's operational security department, who are presently investigating.

By Martin Stone Reported by, .

© 2001 The Washington Post Company


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