Sophos is warning computer users not to believe everything they read in an email, following news that Ford Motor Company has been the victim of a bogus email hoax claiming the company was offering 500 of its Ford Fusion Hybrid motorcars for the bargain price of GBP 10,000. The car normally costs around GBP 18,000.
The emails claim that to receive additional government funding at a time of global economic recession, the special car offer is being made to help the firm “bounce back in business”. To try and make the email appear more believable the messages are signed by “Gary Settles” who is described – incorrectly – as a Ford sales manager in Michigan.
Ford Motor Company has since issued a press release debunking the hoax.
“It wouldn’t be surprising if people fell for this email in these cash-strapped times, especially as the Government’s new car scrappage scheme comes into force today and many car owners will be on the look-out for a new deal,” said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos. “What’s more, many people may pass this on to others, but while you might think you’re doing someone a favour, actually sending round emails like this clogs up valuable bandwidth and seriously inconveniences both home and business users. The best bet is to simply delete these emails – if they sound too good to be true, then they probably are.”