Communication in the today’s world is dominated by email, instant messaging, and social networking. However, for making any formal statement or announcement, hard-copy letters are still sent using postal services. In both mediums, unwanted, unsolicited letters are not new; however, it may still be surprising if a spam message is sent over using postal services - somewhat low tech, but perhaps most effective way to bypass all kinds of online security. In a letter shared by a recipient, we found familiar text seen in emails associated with scams. We confirmed the hard-copy letter to be a 419 scam.
Here is the scanned copy of the letter (where the identity and address of the recipient have been blurred):
Text inside the letter has everything that we commonly see with email scams, except that we do not find any reply-to email addresses. Also, the scammer stresses that recipients must only fax the information (direct telephone and fax number), even if that means buying a new fax machine.
Such spam campaigns are already known to be widespread online and quite possibly had been seen in the past in letter form as well. As always, Symantec is committed to provide maximum security to its online users. However, with this particular incident, we would like to remind users to be careful of these hand-delivered scams also.