Did someone hijack my email, or just make a mistake?

I have an email account I use for spammy stuff. (Like Kohl’s. Sometimes I want their ads, but it’s amazing how many emails they send out.)

I recently checked this account, and there are a bunch of emails from the Playstation network. It seems someone is purchasing games, and using my email account.

As far as I can see, they’ve never opened any emails in the account. So maybe they’ve never even been into the account. It’s possible their email is similar to mine and they mistyped it. It’s a simple name - something like “moviefan.”

Is there some reason to hijack an email account to use the Playstation network? I tried some searches but didn’t find anyone else with this situation.

Are they legit emails? Are they from playststion’s email account and do the links within go to the PlayStation site? Cuz if not it could just be spam.

They look legit. They are addressed to a specific user, and say things like:

Thank you (username) for purchasing (game). You have $1.60 left in your wallet.

I would suspect that if you follow them they will ask for some kind of information that gives access to your bank account. Something like offering a refund, just type in your a/c No and pin!
Or access your computer passwords.

I get emails like that fairly frequently. Despite (or maybe because of) having a pretty rare last name, a whole lot of people with my last name and first initial give (my first initial)(my last name)@gmail.com as their address.

A few years ago, I started tracking the names of the people I’d get emails for, and I’m up to around 20 by now. I’ve gotten addresses and phone numbers, rental contracts, credit card info, job interview info, moving info, and even due dates for these people. (That last one’s expecting at the end of February. I’m tempted to send an inexpensive baby gift, just to see if I get any reaction.)

Sometimes I wonder if Google has found a mostly workable but not perfect way of splitting up email addresses so multiple people can use the same address.

Sometimes I’ll get links in the emails for these people, and when I click on the link, info on them appears. One of them signed up for emails from Human Rights Watch, and recently I figured, what the hell, I’ll send them a few bucks. And when I clicked on the link in the email to do so, this particular alter ego’s full name and address were already loaded into the donation form.

Have you noticed any suspicious activity on your bank account?

No. And FWIW, these emails are showing up in my friends-and-family email address, which is pretty well disconnected from anything I do with money. I’ve got a separate email address that I use for buying stuff online, donating to charities, etc., and my banks don’t even have my email: I still get statements by snail mail.

Then I think you’re safe in marking them as spam.

You should change your password just to be safe but it is probably someone who made a typo or used an E-mail they didn’t have to avoid the spam themselves. I get e-mails from Heathrow airport because apparently someone used my address to register with them. I changed my password but it is basically just junk mail.

There’s a Chinese guy in Singapore with a real name very like an online nickname I often use (not jjimm). I have a gmail account and he, apparently, has a ymail account but he and his business contacts mistype a lot. I’ve observed multi-million dollar shipping deals arriving in my inbox over the years, presumably failed ones.

He also registered me for Twitter (and I took over his account and called him a dingbat) and Facebook (I tried to take that one over but there’s inconsistent logic in the sign-up process and neither he nor I can access it now). Recently I think he’s been getting lonely because I get a lot of Asian dating sites saying “thanks for registering”.

All of which is amusing except my email address is now on Asian dating site lists and I am apparently also registered for dozens of other hookup sites. Now Gmail thinks I’m looking for Singaporean sex workers, and all the ads in my inbox are about them, which my girlfriend doesn’t find amusing.

If there isn’t a legit Unsubscribe link I mark them as spam too. If a company just starts deluging me with emails without confirming that I am their customer, I don’t have a lot of sympathy for them.

The banks are the worst, there is no unsubscribe option and they want you to LOG IN to change the email address, when I’m not even their customer. And of course they sent the emails from a non-monitored address.

I happens to me lot with an email based on a very common name, probably over half a dozen over the years, but only three now. The only people who ever took my address out their family email group were the one’s that sent me someone’s confidential medical records.

I still get pictures and reunion invitations and birth / marriage / death announcements from one group. I’ve nearly forgotten that I don’t know these people.

Nice try, hope your girlfriend buys that. :smiley:

The weird thing in my case is that, over time, it’s been nearly 20 someones.

I’ve never been particularly concerned about it. I’ve got no reason to believe they’re reading my email, and if they’re sending emails from my address, they aren’t in the Sent folder. And while in most of their cases, I know nothing more about them than a first and last name, in some cases I’ve known far more about them than I’m sure they’d be comfortable with.

From time to time, I get on email lists clearly intended for my alter ego: Toys R Us/Babies R Us for the expectant mother, for instance. And I unsubscribe and mark as spam unless I feel like keeping it (the Firebug hasn’t outgrown Toys R Us yet, and Human Rights Watch was the sort of outfit I didn’t mind getting emails from).

And in a few instances, I’ve intervened: when I got info about a full-day interview with all the bells and whistles, including hotel, I let the prospective employer know that they needed to communicate with their prospect by phone or snail mail. And similarly, I suggested a landlord send a rental contract by snail mail.

But so far, at least, I’ve never contacted any of my alter egos.

There are also a lot of technically illiterate people out there who just don’t understand email addresses.

That’s what she said.

How could you? You don’t know their email address …

When I get email in what looks like a family group emailing more than once, I might do a ReplyAll to say, “this is not your second cousin, this is a total stranger who now knows your house will be empty the week-end of the 6th.” I usually get at least three more emails in that chain.

If I get a quote from a contractor or salesperson, I might reply with “wrong email”

Once I was getting emails with legal documents attached, with significant person information. I poked around on the web until I found contact information for the probable intended recipient and let her know, but I would not go to that much trouble often.