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OT , How do they make money by harvesting emails?

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  • OT , How do they make money by harvesting emails?

    In St. Louis Craigslist, there are a lot of legit looking fake ads. They want you to reply by email or sometimes phone.The few times ,that I have replied,it was a dead end. No response or a weird telephone signal.This is an ongoing thing,so SOMEONE MUST BE MAKING MONEY FROM THIS. Does anyone know about this. Edwin Dirnbeck

  • #2
    They make money by scamming you and folks like you that reply to them.

    You really need to watch out for emails that appear to be from places you may have accounts with too. The "from" may look somewhat legit but if your email program is any good at all it'll show the real address. And those are typically something very odd. Needless to say NEVER CLICK on anything in an email you get if you were not expecting something from that company due to you recently having a dealing with them. And for sure NEVER CLICK on anything requesting you to confirm your account.

    If in doubt on such things ignore the email and sign in to the account in a separate event accessing the service through a direct web link. If the email was real there will be some manner of notice waiting for you.

    There's SO many scammers out there.
    Chilliwack BC, Canada

    Comment


    • #3
      They're 'harvesting' those email address.

      In the "direct email marketing" business, you can buy lists of email addresses. You can buy basically four levels of email addresses grouped into a list:

      1. A huge grab-bag of email addresses, with little effort made to confirm that the addresses are read and used by a person, or that an email sent to the addresses on the list won't bounce. These will be the cheapest lists.

      2. A list of addresses that have had some effort put in to verifying that an email sent to the addresses won't bounce.

      3. A list of addresses that have confirmation that email sent to them not only won't bounce, but that someone is actually using that address. This can be done with by buying addresses used by various businesses, retailers, political campaigns, - but also by putting up ads asking you to email for more details.

      4. Email address lists that have been groomed to contain only live email addresses, but with further filtering for sales/marketing purposes. For example, you are seeing the fake Craigslist ads in the St. Louis area. Well, there's a further "value add" to being able to qualify that email addresses are not only live, but they're in the St. Louis area. These addresses are worth significantly more money than the addresses from the first two categories, and more than the third (ie, verified non-bouncing) address in the third category.

      5. Email address lists of live addresses of people who have actual money to buy a product, who have a history of buying similar products, etc. These addresses are gold in the email marketing world. They're very expensive to buy as a list, and worth real money to sell.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by wyop View Post
        They're 'harvesting' those email address.

        In the "direct email marketing" business, you can buy lists of email addresses. You can buy basically four levels of email addresses grouped into a list:

        1. A huge grab-bag of email addresses, with little effort made to confirm that the addresses are read and used by a person, or that an email sent to the addresses on the list won't bounce. These will be the cheapest lists.

        2. A list of addresses that have had some effort put in to verifying that an email sent to the addresses won't bounce.

        3. A list of addresses that have confirmation that email sent to them not only won't bounce, but that someone is actually using that address. This can be done with by buying addresses used by various businesses, retailers, political campaigns, - but also by putting up ads asking you to email for more details.

        4. Email address lists that have been groomed to contain only live email addresses, but with further filtering for sales/marketing purposes. For example, you are seeing the fake Craigslist ads in the St. Louis area. Well, there's a further "value add" to being able to qualify that email addresses are not only live, but they're in the St. Louis area. These addresses are worth significantly more money than the addresses from the first two categories, and more than the third (ie, verified non-bouncing) address in the third category.

        5. Email address lists of live addresses of people who have actual money to buy a product, who have a history of buying similar products, etc. These addresses are gold in the email marketing world. They're very expensive to buy as a list, and worth real money to sell.
        What you write makes sense. Yet there is a piece missing. Let's say I harvested such a list and now wanted to sell it. How would I find a customer? How would such a list be priced? If there were a huge infrastructure behind the spam world (and I sure am not saying there isn't) why isn't it at least somewhat visible?

        metalmagpie

        Comment


        • #5
          Here's just one result from a quick search:

          https://www.emaildatapro.com

          That's just on the visible web. If you look on the "dark" web, you can find many, many, many lists of stolen email addresses, along with contact information, bank accounts, you name it. The email addresses sold don't have to end up in legit markets that advertise in public.

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          • #6
            There are so many scams out there that it's impossible to keep up with them all.
            Bottom line...... don't open anything that you don't know who it's from.
            Avoid all social media websites. Those are my rules.

            JL..............

            Comment


            • #7
              It's actually quite cathartic after a hectic day to go through Craigslist, find the ads for items like "Miller Bobcat, $1003" or "2017 Harley Davidson, $1200", pop the "prohibited" button and leave them dark.

              We screen all our phone calls, fill our recycling bin weekly and never click on anything sent in e-mail.
              KMA to 'em all!
              Len

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Edwin Dirnbeck View Post
                In St. Louis Craigslist, there are a lot of legit looking fake ads. They want you to reply by email or sometimes phone.The few times ,that I have replied,it was a dead end. No response or a weird telephone signal.This is an ongoing thing,so SOMEONE MUST BE MAKING MONEY FROM THIS. Does anyone know about this. Edwin Dirnbeck

                There are many ways to leverage these things. It's not always clear to the victim. One thing to keep in mind is that they don't care if you cant call them as long as it's cost them nothing. They make their money on the people who do get through.

                You mentioned that you call the number and don't get through. That often happens when they send out 500,000 emails (no cost to them) and have only 50 people ready to take calls. The phones and people cost them, so they try to keep them busy. Watch out about calling numbers from areas that you don't recognize. Some of them are actually "pay per call" numbers. Don't call any 900 numbers or numbers that start with 011.

                For the craigslist ads, what they want to do is get you on the phone so that they can talk you into doing something dumb, like giving them a credit card number. If they can get your cell phone number they can start a back and forth conversation, again with the idea of winning your confidence so that you'll do something dumb like put a $2000 deposit (via the web) on rent for a house that they don't own. Because it's text, they can have one person exchanging text messages with a dozen people at once.

                So it all comes down to a game of numbers and cost. If 5000 emails (zero cost) get 1% response (50 people) and 1 percent of those people (5) are talked into paying $1000 each, that's a fine payday for the crook.
                At the end of the project, there is a profound difference between spare parts and extra parts.

                Comment


                • #9
                  If you are gathering such a list of e-mail addresses, you are either an advertising company or have a relationship with one or more advertising companies. You may even have been hired in advance to do just that. Of course, it is always possible to develop the lists and then try to solicit the ad companies, but that would be the hard way to go. That being said, I am sure that there are people who do that and are successful at it. Who do you sell it to? ADVERTISING COMPANIES!

                  My last job before retiring was with an advertising company that primarily used informercials. I am a TV engineer and my position with them was primarily due to their need to gather sales information: what works and where does it work. When you call an 800 number from a TV commercial, you are providing two pieces of information. First, you are telling them that their informercial worked in YOUR city/area. And second you are telling them that a particular version of that informercial worked better or worse than other versions. They do not ask you any questions about that information, but the phone number that you called does. They make different version of the informercials and air them in different cities/areas. Each of these has a distinct phone number so a person in Los Angeles will call a different number than one in New Orleans or Chicago. That call gives them the information they want. My job was in producing all those different versions of the informercials - we made hundreds, sometimes thousands.

                  Very few callers knew or even suspected that they were being milked for information just by the fact that they dialed an 800 number. E-mails can also provide information. First there is the actual e-mail address: when you send an e-mail it has your return address in it. And they KNOW that is a good address. If you are answering an ad for something, then you are telling them you are interested in that and probably similar items. An answer to an ad for a micrometer is probably form someone who is interested in measuring instruments in general and also in areas where those instruments are used. That is valuable information. Third, if it is in response to a local ad, like a Craigslist ad is, then you have told them that you are probably in that area. You also probably have enough funds to cover the price of that item available. That's a lot of information that you are giving them with just a single e-mail.

                  BTW, that informercial company where I worked was also getting into internet and other forms of direct marketing. I am sure they purchase lists like the ones we are discussing. Also, not all users of such lists are crooks. The company that I worked for was in business for many years and they were very concerned with being completely legal. I can't say that their products were always worth purchasing, but they were not the manufacturers. They just provided the advertising. In a candid moment the owner once said that only one in ten of their ad campaigns actually worked well. This was mostly due to products that were not well thought out. Some of their successes were for companies like Time-Life and George Forman. It is not easy to introduce a new product. But it can be expensive.



                  Originally posted by metalmagpie View Post
                  What you write makes sense. Yet there is a piece missing. Let's say I harvested such a list and now wanted to sell it. How would I find a customer? How would such a list be priced? If there were a huge infrastructure behind the spam world (and I sure am not saying there isn't) why isn't it at least somewhat visible?

                  metalmagpie
                  Last edited by Paul Alciatore; 06-16-2019, 05:41 PM.
                  Paul A.
                  SE Texas

                  Make it fit.
                  You can't win and there is a penalty for trying!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Well, it is just a common sense think. Are you or will you give some stranger money?

                    If so it might be right up yer ally, I suspect not.

                    I have as little as 15 email addresses and online profiles.

                    You can look up John Rouche and you wont find me. (Unless you talk to the few here that know me) JR
                    My old yahoo group. Bridgeport Mill Group

                    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/...port_mill/info

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Thanks to all that answered. I guess that I am too idealistic. I think people should make and sell things that are usefull and good. It seems that most of what we buy,is dreamed up by some marketer saying "what can I sell" Most of us ,myself included have fallen for the biggest marketing scam ever created. That is" Your value as a human being depends on what car you are driving" Edwin Dirnbeck

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Edwin Dirnbeck View Post
                        ......Most of us ,myself included have fallen for the biggest marketing scam ever created. That is" Your value as a human being depends on what car you are driving" Edwin Dirnbeck
                        And that also means that "your right to the road depends on what kind of car you are driving"..... While not all who drive expensive cars are jerks, most of those who drive like jerks are driving at least a BMW. There are also many Corvette drivers, and a few assorted sports car drivers, Maserati etc, who drive like jerks.
                        1601

                        Keep eye on ball.
                        Hashim Khan

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by metalmagpie View Post
                          What you write makes sense. Yet there is a piece missing. Let's say I harvested such a list and now wanted to sell it. How would I find a customer? How would such a list be priced? If there were a huge infrastructure behind the spam world (and I sure am not saying there isn't) why isn't it at least somewhat visible?

                          metalmagpie
                          Same as if you have 10 tons of Sarin nerve gas, weapons grade plutonium or submarine full of metafetamine

                          I have never seen drug seller personally but I have heard they are big business/problem pretty much everywhere.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Have you noticed, fallen for, the requests from Yahoo, Facebook, ebay etc to provide your phone number "to protect your account". Register for a new gmail and can only open it if you enter the code sent by text to your mobile number. Hey now I've got your email AND phone number. Kerching!

                            There was a nice little local forum service in the UK based on postcode that just connected you to people in the same locality. Minimal registration data so they could only sell the data to the local plumber. Then the owner sold it for a million to a parasitic Californian company and to continue with their version you had to give a verified address, email, postcode (the original data) and phone. Goodbye.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I get at least 6 to 12 calls daily on my land line. About the same number of calls on my cell but weekly.

                              I've heard that many of these numbers rely upon the "victim" using redial or just calling the scammer's number back. Have heard stories that if you call to see what they want, the scammer gets a piece of the large charge that ends up hitting your phone bill. Even if no one speaks when you call. Even a few cents times thousands of calls adds up.

                              If I don't have you programmed into my land line phone's caller ID or cell phone, I don't answer. If you don't leave a message you don't get called period. If you leave a message that the IRS is on its way to arrest me unless I call you to intervene, I'll offer them coffee and donuts when they appear.

                              I love those folks who have the ability and knowledge necessary to scam the scammers. Especially those guys who reply to the fake MS call desks. While the scammers are working on trying to access their computers to install viruses, the anti scammers actually gain access to the scammers computers and delete all their files. YouTube has some really great ones, especially a guy named "Brown". He's a Brit that has it mastered.

                              Oaks
                              S E Michigan

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