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Nokia Giveaway Hoax

by Brett M. Christensen


Email claims that Nokia is giving away a free phone to recipients who forward the same messages to eight or more people.

Brief Analysis

Noika is NOT giving away a new mobile phone in exchange for forwarding emails. The message is a silly hoax.


Hi Everyone,

Nokia Is Giving Away Phones For “FREE”!!

Nokia is trying word-of-mouth advertising to introduce its products.And the reward you receive for advertising for them is a phone free of cost! To receive your free phone all you need to do is send this email out to 8 people (for a free Nokia 6210) or to 20 people (for a free Nokia WAP).Within 2 weeks you will receive a free phone. (They contact you via your email address).

You must send a copy to anna.swelan@nokia.com


Detailed Analysis

Noika is NOT giving away a new mobile phone in exchange for forwarding emails.

It is highly improbable that any legitimate company would employ such a haphazard promotional method as the uncontrolled forwarding of emails. Also, consider how many times an email like this might be forwarded in a two-week period. If the claim were true, Nokia might have found that they were obligated to give away thousands of phones.

Nokia has the following disclaimer on its website:

Nokia is aware of the prank e-mail circulating around the world. The content of the e-mail is not true. Nokia does not hand out free mobile phones. We apologize for any inconvenience caused to our customers.

The hoax has spawned other giveaway hoaxes, including one that pretends to be a counter-offer from Nokia rival, Ericsson. The Ericsson version is reproduced below. It’s interesting to note that “Anna Swelund” is the person to contact in both the Nokia giveaway hoax and the Ericsson version. Perhaps, Anna is moonlighting? 🙂

Dear customer Our main competitor, Nokia, is giving free mobile phones away on the Internet. Here at Ericsson we want to counter their offer. So we are giving our newest WAP-phones away as well. They are specially developed for Internet happy customers who value cutting edge technology. By giving free phones away, we get valuable customer feedback and a great Word-of-Mouth effect.

All you have to do, is to forward this message to 8 friends. After two weeks delivery time, you will receive a Ericsson T18. If you forward it to 20 friends, you will receive the brand new Ericsson R320 WAP-phone. Just remember to send a copy to Anna.Swelund@ericsson.com – that is the only way we can see, that you forwarded the message.

Best of luck

Anna Swelund
Executive Promotion Manager for Ericsson Marketing

Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,