All those on the e-mail list of State Rep. Joan Welsh, D-Rockport, were asked the morning of Feb. 22 to help her get home from England because she had lost her wallet and was penniless.

The appeal, however, did not come from Welsh.

“It is all false,” she said Feb. 22. “I have a zillion e-mails and a zillion calls and I have no idea how to reach Google.”

The spam, referred to as spoof, originated with Welsh’s official e-mail address that she uses to reach constituents and other parties interested in what takes place from her perspective in Augusta.

As of the morning of Feb. 22, she was busy filling out online forms with Google, which manages her Gmail account.

“It’s a challenge to figure out what to do,” said Welsh.

She advised all who received the e-mail to eliminate it.

The bogus e-mail reads:

“Hello,

“How are you doing? Hope all is well with you and family, I know this might be a surprise to you but I am sorry I didn’t inform you about my traveling to England for a seminar.

“I need a favor from you because I misplaced my wallet on my way to the hotel, my money and other valuables are gone including my credit cards. I will like you to assist me with an urgent loan of 2300 british pounds which is about $3800 U.S dollars to sort-out my hotel bills and get myself back home. This is one favor I will always show gratitude throughout my lifetime.

“I will appreciate whatever you can afford to help me with and I promise to refund the money as soon as I return home. Please do this for me and I will be grateful.

Rep Joan Welsh
District 46, Camden/Rockport
54 Sea St
Rockport, ME 04856
207-263-6554″

In response to the alarmed messages she received, Welsh circulated the following:

“Many people are receiving the message below. This message is spam. Using a technique called spoofing, the message appears to come from me. The Legislative Office is looking at the sending information so we can try to block it in the future. Please do not respond to it. The bad guys may use the response to build more spam, which may include something being sent from ‘you.'”