Fraud Alert: Bogus Article Acceptance Letters

Retirement Home for Predatory Publishers. [Photo by Adam Jones, CC:BY]

Retirement Home for Predatory Publishers.
[Photo by Adam Jones, CC:BY]

We’ve heard a few reports of researchers being scammed by criminals with inside information on article submissions at predatory publishers. The scam works like this: Someone obtains of a list of articles submitted to — and under review by — a publisher, along with the corresponding author’s contact information. Then, pretending to be the publisher,  the scammers send a bogus email to the corresponding author informing him that his paper has been accepted. The email also contains article processing fee information, advising the author to wire the fee to a certain person. The problem is that it’s not the publisher sending out the acceptance emails — it’s a bad guy. Here’s an example of one of the letters:

Dear Sir/Madam,

Your paper manuscript which was accepted for publication in the African Journal of Business Management has been fully processed and is now ready to be published. However we are unable to proceed with the publication because we are yet to receive the manuscript handling fee for your paper.

Kindly make payment through Western Union Money Transfer to: Name: Edokpolor John Onome Delta State Nigeria

Please do indicate clearly the: A) Control Number B) Sender’s name and address c) Telephone number (if included) D) Test question and answer E) Amount

Thank you oncea again

Best regards,

Ejegi Precious Editorial Assistant
African Journal of Business Management(AJBM)

E-mail: academicjournals.ajbm@gmail.com www.academicjournals.org/ajbm

We’ve noticed a similar situation being warned about in ISODI journals, a Middle Eastern publisher included on my list of predatory publishers. Their journal World Applied Sciences Journal has this warning posted on their website:

Dear respectful IDOSI authors If anybody called you and introduce himself as IDOSI representative, please do not pay any attention to what he/she claims! Such person may have financial target to take your money and may promise you for publication of your paper without peer review. Please do not follow their instructions; the aim of the game is to take advantage of your cash! It is best for you upload your paper through the web; www.WASJ.org  you can publish your paper in any of journals ISI/ISC and non-ISI like IJE, IJEE and JWWT without any charges. I shall try to negotiate with IDOSI financial office to reduce costs and for some journals just electronic version. For any suspicious case you may contact Professor Najafpour at Noshirvani University of Technology Babol, Iran +98111-3210975 for any additional information. You may find the actual IDOSI regional representatives in the following link: http://www.idosi.org/reg-rep.htm

Another journal reporting a similar scam is the Bosnian journal HealthMed. We think we’ve discovered yet another reason to avoid submitting manuscripts to questionable publishers. All publishers — including predatory ones — need to protect their business data better to prevent this from happening further, but I think this is just the beginning of a new trend.

4 Responses to Fraud Alert: Bogus Article Acceptance Letters

  1. D. R. says:

    I do not believe that any decent scholar is stupid enough to be fooled by a scam, whether e-banking, credit card, or other scam. One that would be fooled by this does not deserve to have a PhD.

  2. D.R., What is a “decent scholar”? You know it when you see it? Many excellent writers cannot balance a checkbook. There is a widespread problem of fraud, identity theft, and confidence schemes, and anyone with considerable intellect cannot be faulted for a shortcoming that was exploited. The person that changes their own car oil is just as susceptible to auto mechanic fraud as the neophyte. Confidence fraud needs your confidence.

  3. I had to laugh at Jeff’s point that these perpetrators are not limiting their scams to legitimate, reputable OA publishers. Nothing like scamming the scammers!

  4. […] (Scholarly Open Access: Fraud Alert: Bogus Article Acceptance Letters) […]

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