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Category: New Questions

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Photography Question 

Spam Emails From Contact Button

Recently an email has been sent out to many of our members via their contact button from their Free Gallery, Deluxe Site or Premium Gallery. There is not much we can do to stop spammers from using the contact button. However, the spammers do not view an email address when they use the contact link and BetterPhoto does not ever share email addresses of our members.
Please do not respond to any of these spam attempts as the sender will then have your email address. The most recent spam email is as follows:

"I am junio ola. I am interested in purchasing some of
the art works from your gallery and it will be ship to my new
resident in Lagos,Nigeria. So please let me know if you can sell some
of your Original art work for me to put to my new resident. Payment
will be made out to you in form of a Cashiers Check or Money Order in
us funds once we are able to reach a concrete agreement on the price.
i do hope to hear back from you. thanks and hope to hear back from
you soonest. have a wonderful time."

Please let me know if you have any questions.


Heather Young
heather at

1/12/2006 7:12:33 AM

Debby A. Tabb
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 9/4/2004
  Recieved one yeasterday Heather.
just deleated-it of course it is NO relection on BP.
I think we all know that.
you can't be responsible for others abusing this site with spam.
Thank you for all you do, to try to control things.
Have a great day,

1/12/2006 7:30:48 AM

Charlene Bayerle
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 1/9/2003
  Thanks for letting us know Heather!!!!!
I get those emails on my regular email also....

1/12/2006 7:31:20 AM

Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/3/2005
  i never got one... are my pics that bad that even spammers dont like them?

1/12/2006 9:44:31 AM

Debby A. Tabb
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 9/4/2004
  Craig your pictures are Wonderful,just wait-they've only gotten to the T's


1/12/2006 9:52:36 AM

Kerry L. Walker

member since: 12/21/2004
  Guess that means Craig and I are way down on the list. Can't wait to trade a worthless photo for a worthless check(with the excess funds to be sent back to him, of course)!

1/12/2006 10:07:22 AM

Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/3/2005
  Yeah, the 'Z" has haunted me all my life. Allways at the bottom, allways at the end of the line... Jeeze, and I thought this (photography) would be different!
Booo Hooo!

1/12/2006 10:47:03 AM

Thomas J. Bassano

member since: 10/21/2005
  i got one also it is a terrible scam to make some one feel good and then try to take advantage of them

1/12/2006 2:48:20 PM

Elisabeth A. Gay
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 4/2/2004
  Thanks for the heads up Heather.

1/12/2006 4:37:18 PM

Christopher J. Budny
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 10/3/2005
  Just posting a reply here, so this thread gets back onto the "first page" for others to see...several have received a Nigeria email already, mentioned in another thread...

1/13/2006 4:13:46 AM

Debby A. Tabb
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 9/4/2004
  thanks Christopher,I was going to do the
here is the link to the thread on the NEW scam going about:

please read it-it really helps when everyone helps each other STAY aware.

1/13/2006 6:43:52 AM

Ken Cole
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 10/7/2005
  Thank you, Heather for this tip and for answering my email when I receive the spam message. As if I don't already get enough stupid messages...!

1/13/2006 7:59:00 AM

Joyce S. Bowley
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 5/7/2004
  I'm glad I checked the forum before responding to the TWO spams I received! I got the one from Junio Ola and also a Mrs. Tolu. Both stating they were in Nigeria. Thanks for the heads up Heather.

1/13/2006 8:50:23 AM

Kerry L. Walker

member since: 12/21/2004
  I'm beginning to feel left out. Where's mine? lol

1/13/2006 9:37:31 AM

Sue L. Cullumber
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Sue
Sue's Gallery

member since: 12/30/2004
  Heather, Just got this email - thanks for the info. I had my hopes up, but it did sound suspicious so I'm glad I found out!!

1/14/2006 10:52:40 AM

Nicole Kessel

member since: 4/30/2004
  Thanks for the heads up, Heather!

1/14/2006 7:00:54 PM

Sherry S. Boles
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/28/2005
  Thanks, Heather!

1/14/2006 11:24:44 PM

Donley L. Despain
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 9/25/2005
  Thanks Heather,
I've got two, one from this guy and another one that says they loved the horse pic and her daughter wanted a copy to put in her school book with a promise it would be respected as copyrighted and would not be shared. I was "stupid" enough to ask them to put a comment on the picture and I would share it then. Of course no answer and they were not a member either.

Is there a way to put a small note on messages sent through Better Photos that the sender is not a member or their e-mail has not been verified as a registered person with BP?

1/21/2006 9:24:40 AM

Kevin  S. Daly
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 3/13/2005
  That sucks! I just got one today. I thought I had just won the lottery! Thanks for the info.

How did we all find out that this was a scam? Is there a site that tells you? Did one of you get spammed?


1/22/2006 9:11:56 PM

Laura Clay-Ballard
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/8/2005
  I got one from Junio. I ultimately responded with "I cannot accomodate you."

1/23/2006 12:15:42 PM

Ken Cole
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 10/7/2005
  Yikes! That is all he really wanted you to do! All they (and I'll guarantee you there is no Junio) want is for a response of any kind to verify a real, live email address. Without responding, they don't know your real email address. Once you respond, they have it delivered on a golden platter and can sell it to any spam list going... PLEASE DON'T ANYONE RESPOND!

1/23/2006 12:23:32 PM

Thomas J. Bassano

member since: 10/21/2005
  I am now getting 4 emails a day that have viruses atached to them from a member of betterphoto named kevin burns who got all my info from better photo and is now sending me and a few others viruses he sends them using fake return emails I have contacted the authorities this member was kicke off another contest site for atacking one of my winning pictures with obcene comments and eventualy death threats he is now atacking me here and is a very scary person

1/23/2006 1:20:53 PM

Ronald F. Fischer
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/9/2005
  I am glad I checked this out before responding. I just got an email like this today!

2/7/2006 6:31:28 AM

Michelle Lea  Guinn
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 11/3/2004
  Got one this morning also!!!! mlg~

2/7/2006 8:01:19 AM

John T. Grant
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 12/5/2005
  Likewise, received, keeping the day job. Thanks Heather.

2/7/2006 1:22:20 PM


BetterPhoto Member
  Don't feel bad, Kerry. The spammers don't like my work either. sniff, sniff. Boo-hoo.

2/7/2006 4:57:51 PM

Rob Zuidema
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 3/19/2005
  Got the same email a few days ago fro a Mariam Dallington. Guess the spammers finally got to the Z's.

Did you get your's yet, Craig? I know what you mean about living with the "Z". Last in line for everything! :-)

2/8/2006 5:29:45 PM


BetterPhoto Member
  Hi BP Members,

Yes, in response to the Nigerian email scams that all of us were hit with via the contact button on our galleries, Jay has added an authentication step for anyone who wants to contact a BP member via their gallery. This is a great security step and should help in warding off spam.

Also, you have the option now to deactivate your contact button if you choose. You can turn off your contact button via your Member Center>My Member Info.>Contact Info.>Uncheck Contact Form Activation.

Thanks Jay for working so hard and so quickly on this spam issue.


Heather Young
heather at

2/9/2006 7:15:06 AM

Kevin  S. Daly
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 3/13/2005
  If you are worried about spam, viruses and questionable email sent to you. You might consider using an email service that you long on to a site to view and send your emails. Hotmail, Yahoo and local Internet service providers offer this service. With Rogers Internet, I log on to their site to send and receive emails. The advantage to this is that there is a less chance of downloading potential viruses directly onto your PC and you wont give away your IP address. There is always still a chance of receiving a virus/spam but with proper security software you can prevent most.

Someone mentioned changing passwords…Changing your email/pc/bankcard/betterphoto account password every 30 – 90 days is always smart. Most government employees are required to change passwords every 30 - 90 days for security reasons. If you can, always use upper and lower case and numbers in your passwords.

2/9/2006 11:07:56 AM

Lesli Gresholdt
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 12/23/2003
  I had this happen as well, but they didn't stop at just requesting prints. They went as far as to try to arrange a pick-up location and get my home address and phone number. If they wanted email addresses just for spam I don't think they would bother to respond. His email was very elaborate, see below.

Hello ,
Thanks very much for your email,just wanna paste it in the new
residence for the beauty of the room, The reason I am sending you this
to make final reconfirmation of the(laughing
Made with Canon EOS Digital Rebel (300D) Digital SLR Camera
size---8 x 10 inches---10 in quantities) and also to let you know that
payment will be by
money order. In view of this I need you to email me any
information that may be required to send the money order, as I do not
to send the money order to a wrong location
they gets into the wrong hands. Regarding the shipping, I have a
that takes care of the pick up of my consignments for me and ship to my
destination, you do not worry about shipping, the
company will send down a representative to arrange the sales
documentation and the pick up from your end for onward transfer to my destination

I also want to alert you on the fact that you will be receiving an
overdraft money order, which will cover the money for the pickup (pickup and
shipping to the final destination) as well as the money to be paid to
the company that will take care of the pickup and the documentation with

So please, as soon as you receive the money order, go and cash them
immediately, deduct the money that accrues to you(artworks &
commision), and send the balance to the Head Office of the company that handles the
shipment via the nearest Western Union agent in your area. Deduct the Western
Union charges from the balance and send the remaining.

The money order will be in your name to make it easier for you to
receive payment, deduct your money for the artworks and send the balance via
Western Union as regards my earlier direction, please reconfirm your
details one more time. I will give you the details of the company that you will send the balance of the money to once I get a reply and agreement that you
will send the money via Western Union money transfer after you cash the
money order.

Once the money is received by the agent, the shipping agent will
contact you immediately to arrange the documentation as well as the pick up
immediately. So in view of the above, here are some of the details I
will need for final issuance of the money order to you.

(1) Full Name
(2) Mailing address, not please
(3) your direct telephone number
(4) acceptance of my offer

Once you get back to me with all the above, the money order will be
issued out immediately and it will be sent to you . Hope to hear from you

2/22/2006 2:06:54 PM

Jen Hernandez
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Jen
Jen's Gallery

member since: 3/11/2003
  I received one of these scam emails today, nearly word for word. Although no mention of Nigeria. Her "name" is Mariam Smith. The first email sounded really legit, but it was definately fishy. I asked how she intended to use the 15- 8x10 and she avoided the question. The first email was this:
My name is mariam smith and I will like to order for some art work from you and my method of payment is cashier cheque,so I will like you to pls state if that is ok with you and also less I forget as in the shipment,i have my own freight forwarder that will be coming to pick them up.thanks.awaiting to read from you.thanks.
mariam smith."
The subsequent emails were pretty much the same as has been mentioned above. People need to get a life. Couldn't imagine making a living off of scamming people.

5/18/2006 6:37:02 PM

Clayton A. Harper

member since: 12/21/2005
  I received this same email twice within a 40 minute period on 5/18/2006:

My name is mariam smith and I will like to order for some art work from you and my method of payment is cashier cheque,so I will like you to pls state if that is ok with you and also less I forget as in the shipment,i have my own freight forwarder that will be coming to pick them up.thanks.awaiting to read from you.thanks.

mariam smith.

sounds way to fishy! the individual wanted (10) 16x20 prints of the same photo with matte! my photos aren't that good!!
nice try.....

5/23/2006 5:56:20 PM

Kelli Hamblin

member since: 12/30/2005
  I recieved emails from mariam smith also starting back in May. We have been "communicating" via email since then. She wants to buy ten of the same print she says for her family. She picked one of my worst photos. We agreed on a price and I just recieved 3 international travelers cheques with a total of $2850. I quoted a price of $800. The checks are from a bank in MN but were send via air mail. It appears it is from the UK. There is no return address. She also has never sent me info on where to send them. I felt like something wierd was going on. Guess I'll be going to the police to prevent me from being scammed further. I feel like such a fool but glad I read this before anything else happened. Will keep you all posted.

6/24/2006 10:22:14 PM


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