Here's a scam that targets day-traders and people looking for good stock tips. I received the following spam pump-and-dump (p+d) email today:
**BIG NEWS COMMING OUT FROM THIS COMPANY, FOR SURE TO BE A GROUND SHAKER.**
So Who Is EXMT? Exchange Mobile Tele Co
PK Sym: EXMT
Closed At Last: AUG 06 $0.21
Date OF Action? - May 27, 2008
Over the last 6 years, Exchange Mobile has been intensely involved in the wireless messaging and internet communications market. It has developed and implemented independent platforms to provide internet users and mobile subscribers an instantaneous form of communication.
Founded in 2000, EXCHANGE MOBILE Telecommunications Corp. is an innovator in developing customized applications leveraging leading-edge wireless technology, capturing the imagination of the wireless market while fueling consumer demand.
In the early part of 2002, EXCHANGE MOBILE developed wireless applications that offered SMS (Short Messaging Services) based value-added services to mobile users. EXCHANGE MOBILE has spent the early stages of its corporate existence building and developing a powerful and dynamic platform based on current SMS, WAP, and other emerging wireless protocols.
EXMT A HIGH PERFORMANCE STOCK? WE THINK SO AND PLAN TO SEE HUGE THINGS AUGUST 07 (Tuesday) 2007. ^EXMT^
Here's how a pump-and-dump works:
A scammer looks for penny stocks to invest in. In this case, it's a company called EXMT. They invest a lot of their money in a stock trade, usually picking up thousands of shares for (literally) pennies.
They blast out an email to their potential targets. A p+d email will extol how wonderful the stock is, and how a smart investor can make a fortune. If they send this spam out to fifty million email accounts with a .01 percent sucker rate, that's 5,000 people who fall for it. It's all in the numbers -- the more investors, the better the scammers will do. This is the pump portion of the scam.
When the marks start investing, they'll actually see the stock creeping up a few cents, which makes them happy. It appears the stock tip was correct. After 48 hours have passed, the scammers pull their massive investment out and cash in. If they had ten million shares that went up by a mere three cents, they made $300,000US. This is the dump portion of the scam.
After the huge investment is cashed in, the stock tanks, sending the share price down to erase any gains, or even making the price per share lower than when the mark invested.
This scam hits the occasional traders hardest, since they typically don't have the research skills to see if it's a good investment. As per all Internet scams, there's no such thing as a free lunch. Nobody would send hot stock tips to a complete stranger. They'd have their friends and relatives invest to make a fortune. Besides, if these folks were professionals, the email wouldn't have so many grammatical errors.
Don't fall for the p+d scam. If you're an investor, invest wisely.