Saturday, February 9, 2008

Nigerian 419 Scam: Impersonating Kofi Annan

I can't believe I just got this email! I have already received an email from the perpetrators of the Nigerian Scam pretending to be the FBI, which made me laugh more than anything else, but this is really over the top!

The subject line of the last email I got is : "(UNITED NATIONS)" and they have even included a photograph of Kofi Annan in their message! I am completely speechless so I will just quote what they wrote:


ZENITH BANK COMPENSATION UNIT, IN AFFILIATION WITH THE UNITED NATION.

ATTN:Sir/Madam,
How are you today? Hope all is well with you and family?,You may not understand why this mail came to you.

We have been having a meeting for the passed 7 months which ended 2 days ago with the former secretary to the UNITED NATIONS.

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$ 500,000,00 This includes every foriegn 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 etc.

We found your name in our list and that is why we are contacting you, this have been agreed upon and have been signed.

Therefore, we are happy to inform you that an arrangement has perfectly been concluded to effect your payment as soon as possible in our bid to be transparent.

However, it is our pleasure to inform you that your ATM Card Number; 5490 9957 6302 4525 has been approved and upgraded in your favor.

Meanwhile, your Secret Pin Number will be available as soon as you confirm to us the receipt of your ATM CARD.

The ATM Card Value is $500,000 USD Only. You are advised that a maximum withdrawal value of US$10,000.00 is permitted daily.

And we are duly inter-switched and you can make withdrawal in any location of the ATM Center of your choice/nearest to you any where in the world.
We have also concluded delivery arrangement with our accredited courier service Company to oversee the delivery of the ATM Card to you without any further delay.

So you are hereby advice to forward to this office Director ATM SWIFT CARD Department Therefore, you should send him your full Name and telephone number/your correct mailing address where you want him to send the ATM to you.

Conatct Mr. Jim Ovia immediately for your ATM SWIFT CARD:

Person to Contact Mr. Jim Ovia
Email: contactzenithjimovia1@gmail.com

Thanks and God bless you and your family. Hoping to hear from you as soon as you receive your ATM.

Making the world a better place

Regards,
Mr. Kofi Anan
Former Secretary (UNITED NATIONS).


Spotting the clues that confirm that this is indeed a scam has become a game by now: have you spotted the spelling mistakes? I found 4, including "Annan" spelled with only one "n" in the signature! Can you find more?

What about the contact email address ending with gmail? Don't you think the United Nations would use a more professional one (perhaps something ending with @unitednations, @unations, @un...) instead of a cheap looking one like this?

Impersonating respected authorities (or any one else for that matter) in the attempt of defrauding people is a crime punished by law and I believe that just sending those emails will get the scammers behind bar, if they ever get caught. In order to help the authorities fight against crimes like these, when you get an email that you know is a scam, forward it to reportphishing@antiphishing.org (for more information, look up the APWG website, don't just take my word for it). If you have been the victim of a scam, go to IC3 and follow their instructions for filing a complaint.

If you are still not convinced that you are the target of scammers when you get an email like this and are tempted to follow the given instructions, be aware that this can be very dangerous. If you don't believe me, here is a link to a forum entirely dedicated to the Nigerian 419 scam, where you can find examples of what happened to some of the victims: The Dangers of Nigerian 419 Fraud. Pretty scary, don't you think?


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2 comments:

D'rangedThoughts said...

I got this one today (Kofi Annan Scam) Seems they have updated:

Attention: How are you today? Hope all is well with you and family?,You may not understand why this mail came to you. We have been having a meeting for the passed 7 months which ended 2 days ago with the then secretary to the UNITED NATIONS. 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$ 100,000. 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 etc. We found your name in our list and that is why we are contacting you, this have been agreed upon and have been signed. You are advised to contact Mr. Jim Ovia of ZENITH BANK NIGERIA PLC, as he is our representative in Nigeria, contact him immediately for your Cheque/ International Bank Draft of USD$ 100,000. This funds are in a Bank Draft for security purpose ok? so he will send it to you and you can clear it in any bank of your choice. Therefore, you should send him your full Name and telephone number/your correct mailing address where you want him to send the Draft to you. Contact Mr. Jim Ovia immediately for your Cheque: Person to Contact Mr. Jim Ovia Email: jim_jimovia@yahoo.com Thanks and God bless you and your family.Hoping to hear from you as soon as you cash your Bank Draft. Making the world a better place Regards, Mr. Kofi Annan Former Secretary (UNITED NATIONS)

—G.D'R

Sophie LC said...

I guess when you don't respond to their emails, they try a different tactic!