Hope springs eternal, I suppose. At least it’s hope that seems to continue to motivate the senders of those scam messages we’ve all gotten over the years. Hope, and maybe some very, very gullible people who may still fall for these things, which generally reside under the rubric of 419 Nigerian Advance Fee Fraud letters. Of course, they don’t all originate in Nigeria, though they probably started there, and the frauds take several forms, but the “419” refers to the number of the Nigerian statute that is supposed to address the problem.
I’ve been getting these things almost as long as I’ve been on the Internet, going back well more than a decade and a half, and I’ve been collecting them over most of that time with the expectation that I’d eventually compile them in a book. Once word of that got around, some people started forwarding scam letters to me that they’ve received, so my cup (or files) runneth over with hundreds of these scam and phishing messages, as well as more than a few propositions from correspondents purporting to be amorous ladies.
Whenever I think the scammers have moved on to some new approach, I get another slew of these messages, so I finally decided to do something with them. I went through many of them and picked out a few of the more colorful specimens in the collection, and am including them here. I debated about whether these would be better posted on my non-fiction blog, but really these messages represent a form of creative writing and, since they bear no relationship to any discernible reality, here they are on Stoned Cherry. What appears below are but several of many hundreds of these things I have, so I have no shortage of material to draw on, and I’ll probably post more of them now and then when the mood strikes.
I couldn’t preserve all the colorful formatting featured in some of these messages, but I did retain all the spelling and punctuation (such as they are) of the original messages. They’re presented here for your reading entertainment. Oh, and don’t fall for them. They’re scams, you know.
Making the world a better place
From: UNITED NATIONS
Subject: Payment Notification
UNITED NATIONS COMPENSATION IN CONJUNCTION WITH GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA IN AFFILIATION WITH WORLD BANK
Hope all is well with you and Your family?, you may not understand why this mail came to you. In regards to the recent meeting between the United Nations and the Present United States Government to restore the dignity and Economy of the Nations,Base on the Agreement with the World Bank Assistance to help and make the world a better place for all with the sole aim of abolishing poverty. We have been having a meeting for the past 3 months which ended 2 days ago.
The National Central Bureau of Interpol enhanced by the United Nations and Federal Bureau of Investigation have successfully passed a mandate to the current president of Nigeria his Excellency President Muhammadu Buhari to boost the exercise of clearing all foreign debts owed to Foreigners and Compensate all that have lost their hard earned money to the Nigeria Fraudsters.
This email is to all the people that have been scammed in any part of the world, the UNITED NATIONS have agreed to compensate them with the sum of US$8,500,000 ( Eight Million Five Hundred Thousand United State Dollars) This includes every foreign contractors that may have not received their contract sum, and people that have had an unfinished transaction or international businesses that failed due to Government problems,Contracts Sum, Lottery/Gambling etc.Your name and email was in the list submitted by our Monitoring Teams of Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) observers and this is why we are contacting you, this have been agreed upon and have been signed.
You are advised to contact Rev George Noyce, as he is our representative in United States contact him immediately for your Bank draft check worth the total sum of US$8,500,000 ( Eight Million Five Hundred Thousand United State Dollars) This funds are in DRAFT Form for security purpose ok? So he will send it to you via DHL courier company and you can withdraw the check in any bank around the world.
Contact Him immediately for your check Delivery with the following informations.
1. Full name:
2. Phone and Fax number:
3. Address where you want him to send the check (P.O Box not acceptable)
4. Your age and current occupation :
Person to Contact: Rev. George Noyce (contact agent)
Give him your File Reference (RE-12017-V) and you are free to contact him once you do that he will ask you of your File Reference number which is (RE-12017-V), this file reference number is very important and gives him access to get through to your file and email you back quickly once he confirms your email and your delivery details.
DO NOT SEND MONEY TO ANYONE UNTIL YOU READ THIS.
The only fees you are required to pay is for shipping and insuring of your Draft which is $350 because DHL informed us that when package is delivered for international shipping, We had to sign contract with them for bulk shipping which makes the actual fee of $350 nothing more.
Take note that anyone asking you for some kind of money above the usual fee is definitely a fraudster and you will have to stop communication with any other person or office if you have been in contact with any. And we guarantee the receipt of your fund to be successfully delivered to you within the next 48hours after the receipt of payment has been confirmed. We sincerely apologize for the plight you have gone through in the past years in trying to receive your Fund.
Thanks for adhering to this instructions and once again accept our congratulations.
Good luck and kind regards,
Making the world a better place
Defiling all forms of medical treatment
From: JABBAR BASH
Subject: FOR CHARITY.
As you read this, I don’t want you to feel sorry for me, because, I believe everyone will die someday. My name is MR. JABBAR BASH , a merchant in Dubai, in the U.A.E.I have been diagnosed with esophageal cancer. It has defiled all forms of medical treatment, and right now I have only about a few months to live, according to medical experts. I have not particularly lived my life so well, as I never really cared for anyone (not even myself) but my business. Though I am very rich, I was never generous, I was always hostile to people and only focused on my business as that was the only thing I cared for. But now I regret all these as I now know that there is more to life than just wanting to have or make all the money in the world.
I believe when God gives me a second chance to come to this world I would live my life a different way from how I have lived it. Now that God has called me, I have willed and given most of my property and assets to my immediate and extended family members as well as a few close friends.
I want God to be merciful to me and accept my soul so, I have decided to give alms to charity organizations, as I want this to be one of the last good deeds I do on earth. So far, I have distributed money to some charity organizations in the U.A.E, Algeria and Malaysia. Now that my health has deteriorated so badly, I cannot do this myself anymore. I once asked members of my family to close one of my accounts and distribute the money which I have there to charity organization in Bulgaria and Pakistan, they refused and kept the money to themselves. Hence, I do not trust them anymore, as they seem not to be contended with what I have left for them.
The last of my money which no one knows of is the huge cash deposit of TWELVE MILLION DOLLARS $12,000,000,that I have with a finance/Security Company abroad. I will want you to help me collect this deposit and dispatched it to charity organizations.
I have set aside 25% for you and for your time if you want to help me to
collect these Funds and also invest this money.
N.B-PLEASE I WILL ADVICE YOU TO GIVE THE LAWYER IN CHARGE A CALL IN HOLLAND IMMEDIATELY, HE DOES EVERYTHING ON MY BEHALF AND HE’S VERY UNDERSTANDING AND I BELIEVE HE WILL LEAD YOU TO YOUR SUCCESS IN JESUS name.
NAME: BARRISTER. LARSON BUTLER.
Remain blessed in the name of the Lord.
Yours in Christ,
Mr. Jabbar Bash.
From: From Davies Family And Partners
Subject: Congratulation!! From Davies Family And Partner
We the Davies family and our partners Keith Reynolds and Steve Powell won the Euro Millions Lottery of £61.1 Millions british pounds and after our joyful celebrations and excitements we all decided to donate 1.5 million British Pounds to 10 individuals worldwide as our own charity project. To verify, please see our interview by visiting the web page below.
Your email address was among the emails which were submitted to us by the Google, Inc as a web user; if you have received our email please, kindly send us the below details so that we can direct our bank to effect the transfer of the funds to your operational bank account in your country.
Send your response to this Email: email@example.com
Davies Family & Partners.
Not long enough
From: FROM CODE DUUBR772
Subject: PLEASE ACCEPT THIS COMPENSATION AND FORGIVE ME
ITS BEEN QUITE LONG SINCE WE HEARD FROM EACH OTHER. BETRAYAL THEY SAY IS THE WILLFUL SLAUGHTER OF HOPE. I HAVE BETRAYED YOU MY FRIEND FROM THE MOMENT YOU RESPONDED TO THAT EMAIL I SENT TO YOU SOME TIME AGO., FROM THAT MOMENT YOU ACCEPTED THAT LOTTO WINING NOTICE AND THEN YOU SENT ME YOUR NAME, ADDRESS PHONE AND ACCOUNT DETAILS.
FROM THAT MOMENT I CHOOSE TO BETRAY YOU WHEN YOU CHOOSE TO TRUST ME. I DIVERTED THE MONEY TO MYSELF. I AM SO SORRY THAT YOU HAVE LOST A LOT OF MONEY TO CLAIM THIS PRIZE.
I AM IN A POOR STATE OF HEALTH NOW AND I MAY HAVE DIED FROM CANCER BEFORE MY SON SEND YOU THIS LETTER, BUT PLEASE ACCEPT THE ONE MILLION FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND US DOLLARS COMPENSATION AS AN ATONEMENT FOR MY SIN AGAINST YOU. PLEASE CONTACT MY LEGAL ADVISER BARR. JAMES MANTU BASED IN NIGERIA BECAUSE I HAVE GIVEN HIM INSTRUCTIONS TO DELIVER THIS MONEY TO YOU AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.YOU CAN CONTACT MY LEGAL ADVISER BARR. JAMES MANTU JUST TELL HIM THAT YOU ARE CONTACTING HIM UNDER INSTRUCTION FROM CODE:DUUBR772 HE WILL HONOR MY WILL. FORGIVE ME THIS IS ALL I ASK FOR.
PLEASE SEND HIM YOUR I.D, PHONE AND ADDRESS FOR VERIFICATION AND PAYMENT PROCESSING. MY SPIRIT
WILL BE UPLIFTED ONCE YOU GET THIS COMPENSATION.
Going on a radical hysterectomy
From: Bethany Drifmeyer
Subject: No Subject
Hello My Dear
My name is Bethany Drifmeyer, i am going on a radical hysterectomy cervical cancer surgery today. I have WILLED £10,879,000.00 British pounds to you for the work of the lord. Contact my attorney with my reference number GB/BXR/729/0131/BKH03X1/UK for further info. Barr. Kingsley Lindberg. email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs. Bethany Drifmeyer
The Ultimate Scamming Machine
From: BMW Automobiles International
Subject: BMW Automobiles International
BMW Automobiles International
This is to inform you that you have been selected for a cash prize of Ј1,000,000.00 GBP (One Million Great British Pounds) and a brand new BMW 6 Series Car from International programs held this Month in London UK.
Description of prize vehicle;
Color (exterior/interior): Black Sapphire Metallic/Black Leather
Transmission: Automatic 6 Speed
Options: Cold weather package, premium package, fold down rear seats w/ski bag, am fm stereo with single in dash compact disc player.
The selection process was carried out through random selection in our computerized email selection system(ESS) from a database of over 250,000 email addresses drawn from all the continents of the world. The BMW Lottery is approved by the British Gaming Board and also Licensed by the The International Association of Gaming Regulators (IAGR). This promotional lottery is the 2nd of its kind and we intend to sensitize the public. To begin the processing of your prize you are to contact our fiduaciary claims department for more infomation as regards procedures to claim your prize.
The Claims Processor:
Name: Dr. Rosemary Awele
Tel: +44 703 191 xxxx
Fax: +44 703 191 xxxx
Contact her by providing your secret pin code G50147-0902 and your Reference Number BMW:417419BQ-01-WINNINGS. You are also advised to provide him with the under listed informations as soon as possible:
1.Name in full.
7.Present Country .
8.Short comment on our products. [optional].
We ask that you keep this award personal, till your claims have been processed and your funds remitted to you. This is a part of our security measures to avoid double claiming or unwarranted participants or imposters, taking advantage of the situation Failure to claim your prizes (CASH) would result to forfeiting and will be used for next 10,000,000 pounds sterling international lottery program. Furthermore, should there be any change in your contact address, do inform your claims agent as soon as possible.
Note: Do not reply this mail, you are to contact your claims officer immediately by email. BMW Electronic Mail Lottery is approved and Licensed by the The International Association of Gaming Regulators (IAGR).
This message and any files or documents attached are classified as BMW Automobiles International confidential and Proprietary Information. It is intended only for the individual or entity named and others authorized to receive it. If you are not the intended recipient or authorized to receive it, you are hereby notified that any disclosure, copying, distribution or taking any action in reliance on the contents of this information is strictly prohibited and may be unlawful. If you have received this communication in error, please notify us immediately then delete it from your system. Please also note that transmission cannot be guaranteed to be secure or error-free.
You tell me
Subject: Delivery #12792319 arriving – Please enjoy this week
It would be ungenerous to affect not to know that your selfdenial is to be referred to your consideration for her father Her father thanks you He offered his hand but his eyes did not go with it I knowsaid Darnayrespectfullyhow can I fail to knowDoctor ManetteI who have seen you together from day to daythat between you and Miss Manette there is an affection so unusualso touchingso belonging to the circumstances in which it has been nurturedthat it can have few parallelseven in the tenderness between a father and I knowDoctor Manettehow can I fail to knowthatmingled with the affection and duty of a daughter who has become a womanthere isin her hearttowards youall the love and reliance of infancy itself I know thatas in her hood she had no parentso she is now devoted to you with all the constancy and fervour of her present years and characterunited to the trustfulness and attachment of the early days in which you were lost to her I know perfectly well that if you had been restored to her from the world beyond this lifeyou could ly be investedin her sightwith a more sacred character than that in which you are always with her I know that when she is clinging to youthe hands of babygirland womanall in oneare round your neck I know that in loving you she sees and loves her mother at her own agesees and loves you at my ageloves her mother brokenheartedloves you through your dreadful trial and in your blessed restoration I have known thisnight and daysince I have known you in your home Her father sat silentwith his face bent down His breathing was a little quickened but he repressed all other signs of agitation Dear Doctor Manettealways knog thisalways seeing her and you with this hallowed light about youI have forborneand forborneas long as it was in the nature of man to do it I have feltand do even now feelthat to bring my loveeven minebetween youis to touch your history with something not quite so good as itself But I love her Heaven is my witness that I love her I believe itanswered her fathermournfully I have thought so before now I believe it Butdo not believesaid Darnayupon whose ear the mournful voice struck with a reproachful soundthat if my fortune were so cast as thatbeing one day so happy as to make her my wifeI must at any time put any separation between her and youI could or would breathe a word of what I now say Besides that I should know it to be hopelessI should know it to be a baseness If I had any such possibilityeven at a remote distance of yearsharboured in my thoughtsand hidden in my heartif it ever had been thereif it ever could be thereI could not now touch this honoured hand
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