Chain emails – they used to circulate by postal mail, but these days, they’re also showing up via email and Internet chat rooms.
You probably recognize one when you see it: It’s got a list of names and addresses with instructions to send something – say, a small sum of money – to one or more names on the list. You’re supposed to remove one or more names from the list, add your name to the bottom, and email the letter to a specific number of other people with directions on how they should "continue the chain."
But here’s the scoop on chain mail: If it promises any kind of return – like money – it’s fraudulent and illegal! If you start or forward one, you could face legal action.
Points to remember:
You can help eliminate chain emails. Just break the chain.
- Chain letters that involve money or valuable items and promise big returns are illegal. If you start a chain email or letter or send one on, you are breaking the law.
- Chances are you will receive little or no money back on your investment. Despite the claims, a chain letter will never make you rich.
- Some chain letters try to win your confidence by claiming that theyre legal, or even that theyre endorsed by the government. Nothing is further from the truth.
- If youve been a target of a chain email scam, contact your Internet Service Provider and forward the email to the FTC at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Article courtesy US Federal Trade Commission
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