Thursday, January 24, 2013

Beware Of Massage Email Scams

Beware Of Massage Email Scams
The other day I saw something that got my attention in my inbox.  Yes, I know we all get scam emails, but this email was directed towards massage therapists and it almost seemed real.  Even though I know to beware of email scams, this particular one seemed almost believable.   Once I started to look at it closer though, I could see a couple of things.

In what appears to be this massage email scam, they write to an unsuspecting massage therapist acting as if they are trying to set up a series of massage appointments for some wealthy celebrity or model.  As you read it, you kind of feel special that someone would be contacting you and of course dollar signs begin to go off in your head.  They sound all friendly, nice, and anxious to get this lined up with you, but if you fall for this, I'm sure you won't be very happy because by all accounts it appears to be one big scam. I cannot say with 100% certainty that it is a scam, but many factors point to this and so the best word of advice is to beware!

First of all, the reply address is a completely different address than the one the email came from.  Red flags should automatically go up all over the place in this scenario.  There is no legitimate reason to have one email address that this is sent to, but a reply address that is different.  It is not considered to be standard business practice. 

The next thing that got my attention was how much information the writer gave about them self, including their age.  Frankly, if you are writing to me to find a massage therapist for your friend, your age should have absolutely nothing to do with the email.   I'm sure it is their ineptitude showing through in this email, but I actually had a laugh from this part of the email.

Another major point I saw was that some old friend of theirs recommended me.  Okay, first off I know very few people around the world.  So, for someone in another country to recommend me, is laughable at best.  However, if this is someone that knew me - would you not think they would include the name of the individual.  Would it not be one of the most important parts?

One other thing that is so evident in this email and is normally a red flag in email scams, is the grammar and punctuation.  Many of the sentences had no structure or punctuation and were run-on sentences.  In fact, at one point they stated an end date of Feb 30.  The last time I checked, February only had 28 days or 29 in a leap year - not 30!.  Words were capitalized where they would not normally be.  Overall, it is a poorly executed letter, but that is one big red flag in scams. 

I'm displaying this information on my blog so hopefully other massage therapists will not be tempted by this.  It is a slick email, but it wasn't slick enough for me and I'm calling these people out on this!   I have no problem in exposing this and I wonder if the actual name that it says in the email is actually connected with this, or it is just one they used to make it look real.  I suspect, if there is a person by the name on this email in this world, they have no idea that they are connected to this.

So here's the first email I received just exactly as I received it.  I'm sure they change the emails and names from time to time to help throw people off their trail, but as you can see by the links I referenced at the end of this blog post, essentially it says the same thing.

-----Original Message-----
From: Robert Morrissey. MSI . RMT. CPT []
Sent: Friday, December 28, 2012 11:36 AM
To: (my email)
Subject: Massage Sessions Enquiry

Greetings from Victoria, Melbourne!!

My name is Robert Morrissey I live and work as a massage therapist here in Sydney, I am 49yrs old, Am originally from milan italy. I have been doing massage since 1991. I do deep relaxation massage in which the muscles relax without pain. I also do energy massage that helps people feel great when I am done. I am also certified to do pregnancy massage. I have lots of happy clients here in Sydney.

I have been looking for a Massage therapist for over a week now till i met an old friend yesterday that referred you to me, so i decided to contact you to know if you will be able give my client some massage sessions, My client's name is Ms Rachel Leese, A model here in Melbourne, who will be needing some Massage sessions when she arrives the States, She will be coming to the U.S in 2 weeks time for a modeling job and will be residing in your Area temporarily until the necessary arrangement for her job has been made before she leaves.

She will be needing 1hr Massage session per day, 3 Sessions per week for 6 weeks. Ms Leese, asked me to come with her to America but i told her i would not be able to go with her as i have a course i will be going for in a week time, so i promised to help her get a good Massage therapist in your Area.

Pls tell me a little more about your self, how long have you been a Massage therapist? Would you be able to provide her with the sessions from the 10th of JAN to the 30th of FEB, 3 Sessions per week for 6 weeks. I need you to get back to me with the amount you charge per session and also let me know if she can pay you with a Certified check drawn from a US bank?

You can view some of Ms Leese's Pictures from the link below:

Till I read from you remain blessed.

Robert Morrissey, MSI, RMT, CPT
House Of Seasons Hair And Beauty Centre
43 Greville Rd, Rosanna VIC 3084
ph:(03) 9409 9619 

Today I received another email exactly like the first one.  From what I can see, the only thing that changed was the subject line.  The subject line of this email was "Did you receive my inquiry on the Massage sessions??"  I'm guessing they will keep sending these to me until they just don't get a response.  I'm sure it doesn't help that the State Of Florida releases our contact information readily without a shred of respect for massage therapists as individuals. 

If you have received an email such as this, I would just delete it or you can also report it.  There is a place to report it to the FTC in the links below.  I'm sure if you reply, you will be setting yourself up for other stuff in the future because you would be acknowledging that your email is operational.

If you want more information on this scam, here are some links below. 


If you wish to forward unwanted or deceptive spam to the FTC, you can use the following email address which is .  They state that it is important to include the full email header.  In outlook, you can generally right click on the email in your inbox list of mail and select "message options".  Within the box that pops up, you'll see the text at the bottom that is the header information.  If you have some other type of email service, you may need to Google search how to get the header information.

Please feel free to leave a comment if you have received something similar to this.  I'd rather see these guys find something else to do than prey on good people.  Sometimes the only offense is to spill the secrets so that scam places have nowhere to hide!  It would be nice to see a little more TRUTH and INTEGRITY on the internet, but hey greed and evil seem to rule the world at times.  Regardless of what you do, just beware of massage email scams.

Blog Post And Images (c) 12/30/12 by Don Shetterly

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1 comment:

  1. Good try Anonymous commenter on attempting to use this blog post to proliferate your scam. Unfortunately the thing you didn't realize is that I do moderate all comments and well, it isn't going to get past me. I'm sorry to disappoint you, but you're not going to make money off of my blog.