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Internet criminals up the ante on email scams.

Posted in Crime Prevention May 5th, 2008 @ 10:37 am

Lately, I’ve been getting a lot of email scams from the UK advising me that I’ve got a bank draft waiting for me. Maybe it’s because these criminals know that this is the time of year we get back tax money and this year an economic stimulus check from the government. Either way, my “free” money waiting so patiently for me is not what it seems.

Here is an excerpt from the scam email I received:

“ATTN: Beneficiary,

I have been waiting for you since to come down here in London and pick your Bank Draft cheque of £3.5 m GBP for your compensation that was transferred from BENIN REPUBLIC, by your agent, but I did not hear from you before now why?”
(Why? Because this is a scam and do you think I’m an idiot?)

“It will interest you to know that your cheque/Draft was deposited from MANAGER MRS. MARYAM UDOH, FINANCIAL BANK Of BENIN REPUBLIC and they deposited it to the BARCLAYS BANK PLC LONDON, now you should contact us before the cheque will be cancelled by the issued Bank.”
(Benin Republic doesn’t really exist, it was located in the western coastal area of Nigeria. It only lasted one day because the Nigerian forces captured the province and took it over.)

“We wish to remind you that the Financial Bank of Benin had warned that failing to transfer the funds to you now will result to the cancellation of the Cheque so do contact BARCLAYS BANK LONDON on e-mail:barclays.bankplc@bk.ru
(If there is no such Republic of Benin, I really don’t think there is a bank as well. As for the email address in London, this is a scam, as well. Don’t even waste your time clicking on the link.)

This is the part that gets really good. All I have to do is send them my name, age, address, bank account number and picture and voila – I’m a millionaire! First clue that this is a scam is that they want my bank account number –never, ever give out your bank account number on the Internet. Now why do they want a picture of me? To put in their newspaper to advertise that I’m a millionaire? To verify who I am.

NO, this is how they steal my identity. If I comply with this email scam, they will have everything they need to open an account in my name in other banks to get loans, credit, credit cards and rack up thousands and thousands of dollars worth of bills that I am responsible for. Scary thought, isn’t it?

But, according to my calculations, these emails that I’ve received so far are telling me that I have over $500 million dollars waiting for me. I DON’T THINK SO!

Don’t let this type of email scam from these free-loading scammers/phishers entice you into their bogus get rich quick schemes. Tomorrow, I’ll answer the question that is on everyone’s mind -

How do they get my email?

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