Intelligence Note

Prepared by the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3)

September 23, 2005

E-mail disguised as American Red Cross phishing for credit card information

The FBI has become aware of a spam email soliciting $5.00 donations that purports to be coming from, with the subject line of "American Redcross Help Needed! Katrina relief." The email provides a link to click and enter credit/debit card information for the $5.00 contribution. The link appears to go to the website. However, the link actually sends one to a non-affiliated collection site of

This e-mail is a hoax. Do not follow the provided link.

Be cautious when responding to requests or special offers delivered through unsolicited email:

  • Guard your account information carefully.
  • Keep a list of all you credit cards and account information along with the card issuer's contact information. If your monthly statement looks suspicious or you lose your card(s) contact the issuer immediately.
  • To ensure contributions to U.S. based non-profit organizations are received and used for intended purposes, go directly to recognized charities and aid organizations' websites, as opposed to following links provided in emails.

If you have received this, or similar hoax, please file a complaint at