Open Letter To Team

Hi Team,

First of all thank you for the link you have given my Manila Bankers SMS Spam  2013 post from your “Warning Manila Bankers Will Call You for Sensitive Data” article. It’s good to know that we have some common topics and advocacies for our websites.

I will go direct to the point. I am writing this open letter to let you know that upon reading your “Warning Manila Bankers Will Call You for Sensitive Data”

Posted last February 17, 2016, I recognized one of the picture you used. It looks like my phone screengrab image that I captured and used in my 2013 post.

My Image from a 2013 post


Image from website. Take note the of watermark in the upper right part

So I would like to ask you some questions:

  • Is it the same picture as the one I have in my 2013 post?
  • If yes, how come it now has watermark?

I tried to reach out via twitter

But I got no reply, so I decided to try my luck here and write you this letter.

I’m not “madamot“. I’m not selfish. I’m really a nice guy (well… most of the time). I’m also one tweet or one email away if you want to use my image for your website. We are both Filipino blogger and as much as I can I support fellow Pinoys here in the blogosphere.

Actually if the image you posted got no watermark I will be cool.

Kung walang watermark yan image sa website mo wala tayong pag-uusapan. Mabait ako, madali ako kausap. Ni-link mo naman yung post ko sa blog post so OK lang ako e.

But watermarking an image that does not belong to you is kinda “unethical” don’t you think???

Again, I’m just one tweet or one email away (via my contact page). With that message I’m ending this post.

I made my move.

Your turn now.


All the best,


Update 2016.03.24
I have contacted folks via their Facebook page yesterday and raised my concern. They have addressed it and they have apologized for the inconvenience. All is good now!

SMS Scam: Roaming Number Charges, Send 200 to 808 Scam

Got this sms spam and scam


Basically it says that my account was charged with 200 pesos because I called and texted a roaming number. And to cancel this 200 pesos “charged” to my account, I need to send message to 808 containing a specified number (09120009743 in my case) <space> 200, and reply to YES to all prompts/message confirmation from my telco. Let me just take this opportunity to tell Mr./Ms. 09120009743 and 09226908240 that I eat spam, scam and the entire clan for breakfast. We all know that that set of instructions will just transfer 200 pesos to the account of the scammer. In Filipino this is like doing “PASA LOAD200 pesos to the scammer’s number 😀

Its been a long time since I posted about SMS Scam, but I will dissect this incident (and related developments, including the reply from my telco) in another post in soon. But today let me just do an awareness campaign against this Roaming Number Charges, Send 200 pesos to 808 Scam sms scam, and warn my friends and readers not to reply to that kind of sms messages.

Be vigilant and stay safe!

Sam Mendoza SMS Scam 2015… Still alive and kicking

I receive several reports that a certain Sam is making some SMS Scam rounds again this year.

Several years ago I created a blog post awareness about an SMS Scam featuring one Sam Mendoza. She patterned it from a similar scam a year before (the Marie Velasco SMS Scam in 2009). That blog post got some 200+ replies from readers and the scam site kept on jumping and moving to several free domain ( domain redirects).

So fast forward to 2015, I checked the supposedly “Plea for help” website and behold… its the same old scam of Sam Mendoza in 2009. Same picture. Same old set of credentials and Transcript of Records. Oh wait,  there have been some updates on the year of birth and some changes and twists in the words describing her supposedly need for help in return of doing special favors (hehehe) to those who would help her. But overall still the same pathetic “Angel crying for help” epic fail scam.

Read for yourself below and compare it to my Sam Mendoza 2010 scam post.

An angel crying for help…

I don’t know if what I’m doing is right but I just need guidance and little chance in life…

I’m a girl from Bacolod City, Negros Occidental. Orphaned since high school but still surviving. I’m a College graduate / DOST Scholar. Dito po ako lumaki but my family is really from Surigao. I can’t trace back my relatives there anymore… Ngayon, naka-boarding house lang po ako because before, nangungupahan lang din kami ng kwarto nung buhay pa parents ko..

Nag-apply po ako ng work sa San Miguel Bacolod plant and they told me na walang masyadong computer job vacancy ang plant nila because beer factory lang daw po sila. Though i-foforward daw po nila sa main office sa ortigas ung application ko and after a few weeks, I was asked for a final briefing interview sa Ortigas. I-hihire na daw po ako dahil ok naman daw ang interview ko dito sa plant nila sa Bacolod…

… The problem is di ko po kayang pumunta… Di ko na po alam ang gagawin at this point. I don’t have the basic means to go to Manila. I don’t have any relatives na malalapitan dito. Ito siguro ung something for me na “so close, yet still so far..”. Kung may makabasa man pong tao dito sa ginawa kong blog, I’m asking for a little help lang po sana. Mabigyan lang po sana ako ng chance na makapunta ng Manila and to get the job na inapplayan ko po sana..

May matutuluyan naman po ako (pero pansamantala nga lang) sa Novaliches kung sakali. Siguro po, if dumating man sa point na kailangan kong ibaba at ipagpalit ung sarili ko… gagawin ko., makapunta lang po ng Maynila.

Hindi ko na rin naman po sana gagawin tong magmakaawa at humingi ng tulong sa ibang tao kung binigyan lang sana ako ng Diyos ng magandang buhay at hindi katulad ng sitwasyon gaya nito… Desperate na po ako…

Wow she did not run out of tears after 5 long years of crying (and scamming), and I believe we have a new Guiness record here 😀

New URLs/domains include the ff:

So again: Hello there Sam the Scam! better luck next time!

To all my friends and readers: this Sam Mendoza is a scam so please do not entertain any solicitation from her. And please do spread this awareness campaign against this Sam Mendoza scam.

Read the following post from my archives:

If you have received the same scam, or have a new site hosting/containing her scam, please feel free to leave some comments below. Thanks!

SMS Spam Alert: Grace Poe Foundation Spam

It’s been a long time since I got some SMS Spam. So imagine my surprise when I got this one yesterday morning (April 23).


SMS Details:


Congrat’s Ur sim#had won. Php780,000.2nd price.winner.From.”grace poe”FOUNDATION” to claim ur me now..I’m sec.rey v.acosta.Dti#6303s14

So this type of “You just won XXX thousand pesoses, Call me now” sms spam still exists in 2014?

Again dissecting the spam, it contains the usual “big money” promise with the usual spin of using a popular political figure (to gain trust). Now this spam contain the DTI permit number series of 2014. But sorry Miss or Mr. SMS Spammer, I’m not new to this SMS Spamming and scamming world. Why? because I eat spam’s cousin for breakfast :-p .

I am sure that the good senator (Grace Poe) is _NOT_ in anyway connected to this SMS spam. But I am not sure if the supposed foundation (Grace Poe Foundation) do really exists. Honestly, I decided there is no need to contact her Senate office or her PR folks to confirm because my spider sense tells me that this sms is an SMS SPAM.

One surprising information here is “WTH is this Sec. Rey V. Acosta” the guy I need to call to claim my prize. No exact match in my gathered spam intel so this character remains a mystery to me. Another interesting note here is that this is the first (or maybe second) SMS Spam I got this year (Good job to new mobile telco :-D, yah my new telco is the one that does not recycle/reuse old mobile numbers !). The last noteworthy SMS Spam I recall was the Manila Banker SMS Spam which I also featured here at

To my readers and friends, always be wary of SMS spam and scam campaigns as they are still making rounds in the Philippines.

Email Spam: SEO Optimization Offer

I got the email below this month.  I consider it spam because I did not subscribe to it so it’s unsolicited = SPAM. I am just not sure whether I will be annoyed or flattered. Annoyed because spam mails are annoying (that’s why I blog and tag them here). Flattered because it seems something is working (with the website) and it is attracting some attention with some SEO folks out there 🙂 .


I remember Matt Cutts of Google blogged some related encounters in one of his recent post so I am taking it lightly and looking at it more from the positive side of things…

Read on:

Subject: SEO Optimization Local and Global Search



My name is (Name Removed) and working with a reputed leading SEO Company in INDIA having the experience of getting our customer’s websites top in Google, Yahoo, and MSN and other search engine rankings producing high revenue with top page rank.

Monthly task and Responsibilities:

1.  Directory submissions
2.  Social Book marking Submissions
3.  Article Submissions
4.  Press Release Submissions release websites
5.  10 Blog Submissions
6.  1 Unique, 400-word article written
7.  1 Unique, 400-word press releases
8.  15 One Way back links with mix PR
9.  Meta tags changes suggestions
10. Keyword research
11. Competitor Analysis
12. Heading tag changes
13. Alt tag changes
14. Interlinking wherever required
15. Keyword Density in site content
16. HTML Site Map and XML site map and Submission in webmaster tool

Let me know if you are interested and I would happy to send you more details on this.
Kind Regards

(Name Removed)
Online Marketing Executive

Note: We are not spammers and are against spamming of any kind. If you are not interested then you can reply with a simple “NO”,We will never contact you again.

Let me take this opportunity to give a short reply:

Hi (Name Removed),

Thank you for the offer.

Sorry. NO. Not interested

Menard Osena

Website Owner [website-name-removed].com

Some additional things worth mentioning here:

  • I will not reply via email. That warning/note at the footer is kinda lame and I am not biting the bait. I did not publish that email add but I guess they are resourceful (They probably got the address from whois services and that workaround make sense).
  • Email Subject: “SEO Optimization” Local and Global Search – Isn’t that redundant?
  • “Reputed leading SEO Company” = Reputable? White hat? Black Hat? Gray hat? Email is full of bullwords and buzzwords (Uh-oh!)
  • Why use gmail add, a legit or add will add some reputation (and reputation checks 🙂 )
  •  Their services are either “basic (read: I can DIY easily)” or “tricky (read: bordering from gray hat to questionable practices)” or “fishy/phishy”. Decision: I’d rather stay on the safe side.
  • I am not a grammar police, but to be fair this email got some better English (grammar and spelling). Unlike my previous encounters with Mr. Dan Maha and Mr. Basham Marliza) 🙂
  •  To the sender: Don’t push it further. Else I might elevate the rating to SCAM.

Do you also get interesting spam emails? How about SEO offer spam? Kindly share your experience here.

Manila Bankers SMS Spam

I got this SMS spam over the weekend. I consider this as SMS SPAM because I did not subscribe to anything related to MANILA BANKERS.


Sender’s Number: +639998886367

Message from:

Good day!
As part of our THANKSGIVING PROGRAM, you are entitled to receive EXCLUSIVE REWARDS and PRIVILEGES from MANILA BANKERS.

For further information, call:
(02) 5776949
(02) 5708339
(02) 5776972
from 9am-5pm only and look for Ms. Grace Laza for assistance. Thank you and God Bless.

The text message have the classic “enticing reward” bait but sorry MANILA BANKERS spammer, it was a epic fail sms spam. Try it again so that I may consider upgrading your classification to sms scam.

It is interesting to note that with my previous mobile service provider, I got tons of these sms spam and scam but with my new mobile service provider this was the first SMS spam in about six months of subscription.

And speaking of sms spams, I got some replies from twitter that it seems Sam Mendoza SMS spam and scam is making rounds again in 2013? Maybe I need to do an update post here at soon…

[email protected] Spam Run and Aftermath

I receive an email from [email protected] (full text below). The email claims that they are looking for internet marketing assistants, VA’s, Web content writers, copywriters and are offering a substantial monthly salary. If this salary is Philippine Peso it’s ok for a start, but if the figures were in USD, it’s a big wow for me.

Before this incident, I have not heard anything about, so I did the usual cyber-sleuthing. Saw some comments from other Bloggers inquiring about this email spam run. I asked Spiderham and he said that some of his blogger friends got the same email too and they are branding it as spam. I have my own conspiracy theory but I forgot to write about it until today.

I checked their website again and it seems they have an advisory already. They claim that a hacker/spammer got access to their email and send it out. While I don’t 100% like their message and their delivery, I will give them the benefit of the doubt, because:

  • This is BAD publicity for their site
  • Anybody (or any site) can be a victim of such type of attack
  • I want to focus on the possible implications to the community, more than put blame on affected website.

Some curious observations:

  • The email spam addressed me using my full name and not the name I have available publicly (in Twitter, Linkedin, and Google+). I used this name in two or three pinoy blogger events together with the email address the got the spam.
  • The email spam seems to be focused on Filipino Bloggers, checking posts and those who commented to the advisory.

Given these two, I believe some distribution list of Filipino/Pinoy Bloggers got compromised.And our email addresses and names are out in the open…

And not surprisingly I am getting several other spammy mails (and I am investigating it on my free time). But that may be worth of another post in the future.

To admin/staffs, thanks for the notice but I offer some unsolicited advice: in your message it will be better to add some assurance that it will not happen again. Also an about page is good so that the blogosphere will know your site and your writers more.

The full text of the email spam

Hello <full name>

We are looking for committed individuals to add to our team as internet marketing assistants/Virtual Assistants/Web content writers/copywriters

Job description:

You will be given a wide array of internet marketing related tasks and projects, especially search engine optimization work.

Tasks would include writing blog posts, publishing articles, web development, creating joint ventures with other websites, etc.

Skills required:

You must be fluent in written and conversant in the English language

You must be proficient with web-mailing, browsing, word processing, spreadsheets, etc.

Experience with building/managing websites and HTML,CSS,PHP, etc. are preferred.

Internet marketing experience preferred, but not required.

College degree preferred, but not required.

“Willingness to learn new skills useful for Internet marketing”


13000-14000 per month starting pay.

How to apply:

Please submit atleast 1 article about “Information Security & Techonology” to [email protected]

This job is 3 hours a day and 5 days a week we offer high compensation for qualified employees.


How about you? Did you receive this [email protected] Email Spam too?

I will try to update this article with other pinoy bloggers post/s about this issue.