Free Ericsson Laptop?

The following email sounds rather enticing –

Subject: Laptops

Date: Sat, 24 May 2008 12:39am

The Ericsson Company is distributing free computer lap-tops in an attempt to match Nokia that has already done so.

Ericsson hopes to increase its popularity this way.

For this reason, they are giving away the new WAP Laptops.

All you need to qualify is to send this mail to 8 people you know.

Within 2 weeks, you will receive Ericsson T18.

But if you can send it to 20 people or more, you will receive Ericsson R320.

There are people within our building who have received their laptops so I thought I would share this info with you in hopes that you get one before they give them all out!

Make sure to send a copy (cc) to:

– but don’t be fooled – this is a long-running hoax.

Update #1 : There is a new, graphically enhanced, version of the Sony Ericsson laptop hoax now being circulated.

Update #2 : A newer version of this hoax email now claims you can get a free Sony Vaio laptop by forwarding a similar message to 20 people.

About Lee Munson

Lee's non-technical background allows him to write about internet security in a clear way that is understandable to both IT professionals and people just like you who need simple answers to your security questions.


  1. Sukumar L Cruze says:

    Wow! This is a great opportunity to get a laptop BUT I do not understand what is the process – such what will be the text…
    Please let me know regarding this.

  2. Dasoroth Kumar Paul says:

    Hi, Good day,
    Is it true or false? Is there any baseline? If true how user can get free?

    I would be grateful if i get this info.

    Dasoroth Kumar Paul

  3. roseline says:

    it actually sounds to good to be true , but certainly it’s not! i can’ts wait to get mine.

  4. consumer lady says:

    You know what’s funny about it all? I get these emails and because they ARE from friends (plus the little blurb.. checked this out on snopes, it IS legit) posted at the bottom of the email, I dont believe it would ever happen, but because they are friends, you pass it on. I know, it’s not good to be a part of the problem.. but what I dont get is what do these people who come up with this stuff expect to obtain from pulling these stunts? Makes no sense.

    • No-one knows for sure with this particular hoax but the people behind some of these have different motives, ranging from fun to harvesting email lists.

  5. A naive friend of mine keeps forwarding me these scam emails. I don’t understand why people are dumb enough to believe that a company would GIVE away costly computers to anyone who emails the message to 30 people. WAKE UP, PEOPLE!

    If it sounds too good to be true, IT IS!

  6. Abdul Basit says:

    I am also getting these mail many times in a week.
    anna.xxxxx may use to sell this mailing list

    • If I remember rightly I think that the Anna in question is not the name of someone who has ever worked for Ericcson so it’s obviously a made up name.

      Not sure any mailing lists are involved here though as it’s just a hoax chain letter that possibly creates no more harm than just adding to the multitude of junk mail that flies around the web.

  7. nurulhuda says:

    Me too

  8. Me too.

  9. I got this very same email today.

  10. well u know what they say – you’ve gotta be in it to win it!

  11. RobertFergusson says:

    Define military inteligence. A contradiction in terms proven this morning when I opened an email containing this and found that it had been circulating through about 60 or so people, forwarded 12 times, and several of the senders work in high end areas. So much for user and security training, one of these days there’s going to be a virus encoded in the bloody scam.

  12. The word “free” is such a a motivator that most of the times it blurs our judgement. I blogged about this way back in 2003 when Nokia was supposedly doing this bit of “marketing”. Surprisingly, the name in the mail at that time was Anna Swelam! It seems the Ericsson hoax mailers did not put much mind to even invent a new name!

    • It’s very much like all the scam emails I get Calvin – they just keep on recycling the same thing over and over again without any thought.

      These hoaxers are obviously just as lazy.

  13. crushguy says:

    To put it simply and succinctly: NO!
    This chain email really disturbs me on a variety of levels. Let me enumerate them for you.

    1. It is amazingly easy to go to the Ericsson Company website, and run a simple search for anna swelung (the second thing I thought of to search for) and find that this is a hoax. Why do people forward these things to hundreds of people when it takes 30 seconds to find out the truth of the matter, and not waste everyone’s time?

    Here’s what Ericsson Company says (it’s even on their Frequently Asked Questions page, which really says something!)

    A chain letter is currently in circulation via e-mail, purporting that
    Ericsson is giving away mobile phones. The e-mail is a fraud and
    Ericsson is not giving away phones for free. The following is an
    extract from the letter:
    “If you forward it [the letter] to 20 friends, you will receive a brand
    new Ericsson phone.”
    The letter is signed off Anna Swelund, Executive Promotion Manager
    for Ericsson Marketing. This person does not exist at Ericsson. The
    legal and IT departments at Ericsson will trace the person who
    initiated the illegal chain letter. Ericsson is sorry for any inconvenience this might have caused and kindly ask people not to forward the chain mail further.]

    (notice that in this version it’s cell phones, not laptops, and it’s Anna Swelund, not Anna Swelung. Also notice that Ericsson is peeved enough by this that they are threatening legal action against the perpetrator)

    2. Here’s another thing that especially disturbs me. Did it ever occur to anyone that it was possible that Anna Swelung might have been a real person, and if she was, then she’s getting swamped by thousands of these emails every single day, because no one is taking the time to check whether it’s true before they send her an email.

    How would you like it if I posted your email address on this page, and told everyone that you were giving away free laptops?

    You’d feel like suing me, wouldn’t you? Well, here’s something for you to consider. Since you forwarded this email to a bunch of people, you have become one of the perpetrators of this scam, and you have just forwarded your email address to a company which has just stated they’ll be happy to take legal action.

    Let that one sink in for a moment.

    3. Every time you forward this email to your friends, your email address and theirs is getting added to the main text of this email. Which means you’re violating my privacy by sending my email address out in a forward that will eventually get in the hands of hundreds of people I don’t even know. How many of those people are spammers who will harvest my email address?

    • That’s a long, detailed response and you obviously feel quite strongly about this email hoax.

      Is there some reason for that? Did you reply to one?

    • How gullible people are!!! And its normally a friend / acquaintance / client who forward this junk (and you begin to wonder about your circle of friends!)
      Just received the laptop one today……so lame!
      In this day and age WHO GIVES AWAY ANYTHING????

    • i have two friends who are always sending crap like this to me and everyone they know. when i tell them its ascam, they get mad at me and say how would they know that? i say look on the intenet. they say i dont have time to confirm every email i get, i say so youd rather foward a lie to everyone you know? they get huffy and say i was trying to be nice and helpful. no they are just stupid.


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