Scammer targets people who've been ripped off already

Here's a nice little variant on the traditional 419 scam letter that showed up in my inbox this morning:
In David W. Maurer's classic 1940 book The Big Con (the basis for the movie The Sting), he describes how con-men would put their victims on the hook again and again, fleecing them, then convincing them to go home and borrow or steal everything their could from their friends in order to get their original money back. Like a desperate gambler doubling down, the poor marks would get deeper and deeper, and at every stage, it got easier for the grifter to con them again.

So here's the modern variant of it -- fleecing people who've been burned by scammers.


  1. It’s worth mentioning This American Life’s episode “The Enforcers”, wherein they tell the story of 419 baiters who run these scammers on their own con.

  2. I saw a great one a while back. Essentially: “I am an American contractor managing computers in Nigeria. I’ve seen the banks and government here stealing people’s money. I’m sick of it and want out. I see that you were a victim, and I want to help. I’m going to re-route one of the big transfers out of the country, so that I can afford to move back home. Send me your account number to use, and I’ll let you keep 10%.”

    Pretty slick, IMHO. Though, how anyone falls for these in the first place boggles my mind. Are these the same people that fall for chip-cashing schemes in Vegas?

  3. Oh no. A new breed of scams? Scams on top of scams. These people really touch the psychological weaknesses of web users. I’m tweeting this now and spreading the word because it’s most likely a trusting person (like myself :) will believe this one. I must admit, upon reading this I thought – aw, that’s quite nice, until I realized it was yet another scam.


  4. People who lack a sense of self-preservation are easy prey, who knew?

    Different take on the old “identify your mark and bleed him dry” that cons have been practicing since coming down from the trees.

    Had a friend whose grandmother was on the “easy mark” phone list. They finally had to cut her phone service off and presort her mail.

  5. OMGOZZORS! You know these things are legit because they type it in all Caps.

    I feel kinda bad when I hear about people throwing away their life savings into these scams but at some point you have to figure that the weak (minded) are being thinned out from the herd.
    The only problem is gullible people seem to have a propensity to procreate with other gullible people.

  6. Um, is this supposed to be new? I’ve been getting these for years, along with 419s that are about “packages sent to me that weren’t deliverable”, often supposedly containing cheques for millions, and variants thereof.

    The point is that they offer someone – who is fool enough to believe that such money transfers go on – a chance to “steal” something, or to get money via “mistaken identity”. The victim knows that he is engaging in fraud by participating.

    Given the volume of these that I get, I suspect that the tactic must have some advantage over the basic “I have money I need you help to secure” 419. Possibly there aren’t enough people who’ll fall for that now. But it seems more likely to me that marks who think they’ve spotted a chance to commit fraud are (a) likely to stick with the scheme for longer, because their brilliance validates it, and (b) have a more difficult time complaining to their local law enforcement when it all goes wrong for them.

    The rule is simple. If someone who don’t know is inviting you by e-mail to do something that will make you loads of money, then they’re spammers and crooks. It’s a tough old world.

  7. Oh, I posted an Oak Entertainment Center for sale on Craigslist for 75 bucks once. I got an email from some guy in Africa that wanted to buy it and pay for the shipping (which would have been like 500 bucks) with a money order.

    First off, warning bells rang because I know Africa is poor but I know they have freakin’ wood.

    I was already wise to these money order scams though.

    If you don’t know a money order can actually bounce. You cash a money order, and a week later you’ll get a call saying the money order didn’t process through and you have to give them the money back.

    I emailed the guy back, and said sure I’d love to sell him my Oak Center but if he was paying by Money Order I would have to wait about a week for the Money Order to fully clear.

    He didn’t email me back. Surprise, surprise.

    I sold the Center to my next-door neighbor.

    Momma didn’t raise no dummy :P

  8. Is there ANY way to get these crooks back at their own game?? Or any other way to ruin their day? I have occasionally sent them irate emails that basically run them as far into the ground as possible, but they don’t have a conscience so that won’t work.. Any ideas??

  9. I have sent 100,000 pesos for one of these deals and in return I received $469,000 USD so it’s obvious I was not scammed. This money has helped me live in the USA very comfortably with what your country gives me in benefits. I live much better than in Mexico.

  10. It’s pretty sad that someone would fall for this kind of scam. what happened to people’s common sense? I never got these emails in my inbox, but when I was on a dating site a few years ago, I would get emails from men I was interested in playing the “oh I’m kidnapped and they took my money” line… I never fell for it Thank God. What amused me more is the fact that one time this guy says to me “Just give me you’re account information and I’ll put the money in there” (he offered to help me pay for college) and still, I wasn’t stupid enough to believe him. Usually it’s the misspelled words and horrible grammer that will make you suspicious. I feel bad for the people that got scammed but C’MON! in reality no one is going to just give you a billion dollars without some sort of catch.

  11. I didn’t fall for any stupid scam, but here is an email I recieved just today;

    Federal Bureau of Investigation
    Anti-Terrorist And Monitory Crime Division.
    Federal Bureau Of Investigation.
    J.Edgar.Hoover Building Washington Dc

    Attn: Beneficiary,

    This is to Officially inform you that it has come to our notice and we have thoroughly Investigated with the help of our Intelligence Monitoring Network System that you are having an illegal Transaction with Impostors claiming to be Prof. Charles C. Soludo of the Central Bank Of Nigeria, Mr. Patrick Aziza, Mr Frank Nweke, Dr. Philip Mogan, none officials of Oceanic Bank, Zenith Banks, Barr. Derrick Smith, kelvin Young of HSBC, Ben of FedEx, Ibrahim Sule,Larry Christopher, Dr. Usman Shamsuddeen, Dr. Philip Mogan, Puppy Scammers are impostors claiming to be the Federal Bureau Of Investigation. During our Investigation, we noticed that the reason why you have not received your payment is because you have not fulfilled your Financial Obligation given to you in respect of your Contract/Inheritance Payment.

    Therefore, we have contacted the Federal Ministry Of Finance on your behalf and they have brought a solution to your problem by cordinating your payment intotal USD$11,000.000.00 in an ATM CARD which you can use to withdraw money from any ATM MACHINE CENTER anywhere in the world with a maximum of $4000 to $5000 United States Dollars daily. You now have the lawful right to claim your fund in an ATM CARD.

    Since the Federal Bureau of Investigation is involved in this transaction, you have to be rest assured for this is 100% risk free it is our duty to protect the American Citizens. All I want you to do is to contact the ATM CARD CENTER via email for their requirements to proceed and procure your Approval Slip on your behalf which will cost you $250.00 only and note that your Approval Slip which contains details of the agent who will process your transaction.


    Do contact Mr. Daniel Smith of the ATM CARD CENTRE with your details:


    So your files would be updated after which he will send the payment information’s which you’ll use in making payment of $250.00 via Western Union Money Transfer or Money Gram Transfer for the procurement of your Approval Slip after which the delivery of your ATM CARD will be effected to your designated home address without any further delay.

    We order you get back to this office after you have contacted the ATM SWIFT CARD CENTER and we do await your response so we can move on with our Investigation and make sure your ATM SWIFT CARD gets to you.

    Thanks and hope to read from you soon.

    WASHINGTON, D.C. 20535

    Note: Do disregard any email you get from any impostors or offices claiming to be in possession of your ATM CARD, you are hereby advice only to be in contact with Mr. Daniel Smith of the ATM CARD CENTRE who is the rightful person to deal with in regards to your ATM CARD PAYMENT and forward any emails you get from impostors to this office so we could act upon and commence investigation.

    If the FBI was really involved in this, I doubt I would recieve a cute little email from them!
    -Amanda, KS

  12. Why with all of our technology hasn’t someone found these “people” and posted thier names and addresses? I mean I know we can’t press charges, but if those names were leaked…Justice I’m sure would be served! My mom fell victim to someone who offered to buy an old antq. stove we had and pay the shipping to Affrica. I wasn’t there or I would have been able to warn her. It overdrafted her by thousands and really tore up her life for awhile. I just wish for someone with the know how to find out who these sorry excuses for humans are.

    1. Why with all of our technology hasn’t someone found these “people” and posted thier names and addresses?

      Because e-mail scams are run by heavily armed gangs who would cheerfully murder you and everyone you know.

  13. Ahhhh, my scammer was so handsome, and a sweet talker. I met him on a latino singles site. They all have the same story. They are from the states, they had a hardship (death, etc.) and they go to Africa (job, family, etc.) “Steve” was from Scottland, had a British accent lived in MO and his wife died 7 years ago and he traveled the world with his 7 year old son. He said he was an architect and was on a job in West Africa and he homeschooled his son and he was looking for a woman to cherish and love him and his son. He also asked me if my job supplied me with a good income. My gut told me to be aware. I yahoo searched stvskido, which was his email, and I found some kind of scam mail. I confronted him and asked him to cut to the chase and ask me for my bank account number. His sweet talkin’ words changed to f___ you and I never heard from him again……….good-bye sweet talkin’ Steve…..

  14. It’s like all these e-mails coming from the FBI, government security organizations, and world bank boards, claiming they’re trying to get your money back, or telling you they’ve “reviewed” whatever scam you’re being hit with or about to be hit with, and saying it’s legitimate and you should turn all your details over. I even had a few claiming to be the police, and that I would be reimbursed or my money was safe, but I had to play along and contact no one to complain. Thy’r dts, nd whvr flls fr ths scms, lkly s wk-wlld r nv ngh t cntn fllng fr thm n mttr wht nyn sys.

  15. The behavior of the victims (getting in deeper and deeper in a futile effort to correct for past mistakes) reminds me of the story A Game of Unchance from Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick. Some scams are obvious, but sometimes it’s hard not to be a sucker.

  16. This Daniel Smith has been around doing his scams for years. I was advertising my place for rent and he sent me the same crap that is listed here. I sent him a fake bank account and he kept bugging me for the correct account. I asked him for proof of his claim and that was the last I’ve heard. Always ask for proof. They don’t have any.

    The other scam they used on my rental advertisement on Craigslist, was that they are ineterested in renting my place, they are students and will be attending a university in my city, and they will send me a check for 3 times the amount I need for damage deposit, and I should send them the difference back. I always agree, but as a side note I’ll ask them which university they will be attending, so I could help them out on how far my place is to the school. They never respond.

    What I got a kick out of was that in one week I’ve received 5 e-mails with the exact same words from 5 different e-mails. I suggested to them that the least they can do is send only 1 e-mail with 5 return e-mails, since they are too stupid to think. Never heard from them again.

    With all the virus’s out there, somebody should be able to get them infacted somehow……so their computer gets off line for awhile.

  17. I’ve been selling a lot of things on Craigslist and they scammers are out a lot. For every ad I do put out I get at least one and sometimes as many as four. Most of the time they want me to take their check or bank draft, pay the shipper with the extra. And then I had one tell me they were paying me through Paypal and went to great lengths to make it look so, but I got in touch with Paypal and found out it was a lie. I even got email from Paypal to verify the payment,but it was a lie. After I got their email I emailed Paypal and they didn’t know about the transaction and that they knew nothing about it. They can be good so watch out. Now I email back; in god I trust, all others pay cash. I hope this helps someone.

  18. well, i believe and opined that those people that are caught or frauded need also to be scrutinised, because they themselves are fraudsters! imagine, how can someone send an acrymonous messages to you saying you won or a legacy is left for you to claim and you to yourself know that you didnt work, play lottery or have made ay transaction to those set of people before. so, many people need to be very careful at the rate at which they fall victims to these scammers! it’s very simple, you didnt plant or sow any seed somewhere, and you are expecting to harvest/ reap from those places, never, it cannt happen! so BEWARE!

    i guess what we can do to help the law enforcement agents to get these scams are very simple, if the law enforcement at the source are ready to co-operate, computer IP addresses are easy to trace, so you can scare them of by telling them you already registered there IP address, and you will forward the same to the law enforcement agency in their country, pretend as if you know the source and where they are, and tell them to desist from writing you in future, that if they do, you will open their hide-out. also let them know you are a computer network engineer, and a doctorate degree holder in computer science and communication, knowningfully that you know what you are saying, they will be scared of you.

    but the bottom line is no one should ever go into any financial transactions in which s/he doesnt know the source or doesnt plan in order to be expecting a yield or harvest!


  19. How can American adults fall for this junk, has our literacy in this country fallen to such a low level that any high school graduate wouldn’t question validity? The grammar and spelling alone should be enough to tip off a sixth grader.

  20. Dear Mr. Scammer,

    My y rt n jl wth th pdphls, rpsts, nd srl kllrs nd d slw nd pnfl dth nd brn fr trnty n th fry dpths f hll.

    That felt good. Thank you.

    Please use a spam block on your email addresses to avoid low life pieces of scum. Thanks again.

  21. Bune @22, you wrote an interesting comment, but please don’t post your messages all-caps. I’m feeling merciful at the moment, so I turned it into U&lc. Usually I just disemvowel all-caps messages.


  22. Please note: ” they ” are also ” buying ” resellable items in large amounts Via LC or bank tranfser, sometimes they just get your info, somtimes they get you to ship them the goods. Carefull when selling goods to anyone ! I use dummy accounts to give out when needed for payment. Once a real cleint pays me I have to close the account, as I never know.. Scammers of goods or money. beware someday you won’t be able to hide.

  23. Scammers are also great computers hacks so please do not “bait” them. They can fry your system faster than you can turn it off if they are angry with you!!
    It could be dangerous to your computer and worse, it also gives them knowlege about how to become better scammers.

    The FBI is doing (not much) to prevent these issues but US laews are not enforcable in Nigeria. There are also many on romance/dating sites pulling similar ploys on unsuspecting and vulnerable men and women. Most originate in Nigeria or Ghana and are run by mafia-like groups of scammers.

    Beware, these guys play for real.
    Please DO NOT bait or further educate them!

  24. I am always getting an email from Nigeria somewhere telling me that I am a beneficiary for someone who has passed or I have won some money for something. And they want me to send them my personal information like my full name, address, phone number, and where I work, etc. It has always been suspicious to me and I wish they would stop!!!

  25. Oh and Amanda, I have received that very same exact email…so irritating isn’t it?

    I just simply spam them all…

  26. What an interesting read. I too met a guy on a singles site. His name was Jimmy (& the fool gave his real name.) We talked for weeks, & then he had to go to Africa (contracting) to finish a job. (things that make you go hmmmmm) & he was taking his daughter, Rosemary, with him. He was divorced of course. I had to wonder why any man would take his child to Africa, but anyway….they got their room broken into where they were staying, & they got beat up badly, but not so bad he couldn’t write. :) He had all his money stolen, & he had only taken cash. I waited for the other shoe to fall, & meanwhile I was googling him & his family on the net. I even googled in on his home. He had a wife, but no children. I think she was part of the scam, because the writing of the daughter supposedly in Africa was very different.

    I waited, & he asked for $50,000 to be sent to him in Africa. I laughed & sent him all the info about his family & a picture of his home. That was the end of the story, & I’m living happily ever after.

  27. These scammers are pretty low, but they probably justify themselves by thinking, “hey, if western nations can rip us off, why not pay them back?” How did we rip them off? First, colonization by the Portugese and Brits, then endless conflicts n corruption partly caused by special interest groups and big corporations for oil and other natural resources. There is no doubt that 419 scams are WRONG, but they’re pretty much petty thefts when compared to the actions of certain organizations/countries. Of course, that’s no excuse, but prob something people here should consider.

  28. Yep…it hurts. It was greed for me, or maybe it was desperation. Two years ago they caught me at a vunerable time. I was hesitant about the whole time, but I thought hat could I lose. I got so nervous about it by the end of it I was just ready to get it over with.

    I took a job for an artist. I am sure you have heard about that one by now.

    I was dumb, nieve, whatever. It fuckin hurt and messed of my credit up until this day. $4,000 of bonds overdrew my account. I am server/bartender you can imagine how that hurt. I was gonna got back to school that month.

    Still fucked from those mf’s. Anyone know anything let me know. I have an extra set of bonds I never cashed. But the police, senator, president, no one cared.

  29. I have seen a lot of scams mainly because i used to work for a banking institution. One of the them is listed below.
    The person came in with a check for less than 100,000.00 He was sure that it was true because it said that the survey that he took from his utility company was one of the winners. The company sending this letter however, was not one of the utilities he paid. It said that they would deposit this money in his account if he sent a few cents to their account.They needed to make sure that they had the right account. The person was sure it was legit because it had the right utility company that he used, but when asked if he remembered filling a survey or this offer he said it must have been a long time ago, just like the letter suggested.
    Make sure the sites you use are scanned and also after paying with your credit cards or going online always log off and shut the internet site completely before opening another page. If you go from one site to another even if you logoff your account, but not the internet, there are hackers who can get your info that way.

  30. Actually, MSNBC Dateline Investigates found these guys and got them on camera…If they can find them, then why isn’t the FBI or Interpol finding them and prosecuting them? The sad thing was that MSNBC was using such phoney names that the scammers should have known it was a trap.

    I like to mess with these guys…like the FBI one, I tell them that I am friends with Mr. Mueller. Ones that claim they are in the US military and found a lot of cash, I actually look up on the AKO directory, and if I don’t find them, then I ask them to send me an email from their military email account…I string them along asking about where they are deployed to, and if they have family back home, etc…until I finally get them frustrated enough and I admit that I know they aren’t really military, and that moving money like that is against the UCMJ. It has become a game to me, especially the ones that claim I was a scam victim, when I never have been.

  31. there is a way to trace these people to they’re internet service provider…in the original email, scroll down to the bottom of the message, the bottom right hand corner you will see, full headers…click on that, and it will give you the persons true email address, then you copy and paste it, and forward it to Yahoo, or whichever email you are using…
    I usuually send them a message, telling them to go #$%^ themselves, along with a note, stating that I have forwarded they’re address to the local FBI Office, and have a nice day, asshole…Rick

  32. My own personal favorite has always been the one with the poor widower and child. This one is big with dating club members. Following my divorce several years ago my kids decided I needed to make friends so they signed me up for a friends club on line and almost instantly my e-mail was flooded with either weirdos looking for unspeakable acts of depravity or the above mentioned single dads. Wife died in accident, US Citizen, working over seas, wanting to come home as soon as contract is completed, blah, blah, blah. Of course this is always followed up by the ever popular I would very much like to come home to a good christian woman to love me and my child. Any reply by you is met with general getting to know you questions for exactly one week(they always seem to know when your on-line, even if you are using a messenger as invisible)after the first week they are desperately in love with you.
    I tended to point out that I am not a “good christian woman”, I even told them I was a Witch, Wiccan, Pagan and still they continued to harass me whenever I was on-line.
    Getting rid of them is nearly impossible, I actually changed my screen name several times before they all just stopped. Funny thing is that when I opened the letters I received from several of them they were exactly the same even the spelling and context errors were exactly the same. Reporting them does nothing because they simply start new accounts and start all over again.
    I once tracked one scammer for about 8 days and the number of different origin points was staggering. Unfortunately they are very good at setting up servers and bouncing from one place to another and so tracking them is like trying to find waldo in a black and white photo. Just keep watching over your friends and keep a close eye on your parents as they are more likely to be victims than any other age group.

  33. Just asking but anyone of you get the one where you’ve won a BMW and a bunch of money, but you have to pay for the driver and check to be delivered to your front door? Wish I’d saved the emails that went across the great Atlantic…yeah I’m a cynic and a skeptic, but kept them going for sometime. Got a hold of BMW in England and told them what was going on (just to make sure I didn’t get a car you know) and that was the end of it, sent the names of the players. Now I’m getting emails from poor little waifs in Russia, start off really interesting, talking about politics and economy info and what’s it’s like there and all of a sudden it’s they love you and can’t live without you and on their way to Moscow and catch a plan to come visit you and wash your windows! Well, after they get to Moscow, they don’t have enough money and need you to send them a minimum of at least $400 so they can complete the transaction! Gotta love it! Hey, you can’t even tell if they are in fact women, you know! Talked to a bunch of my female friends that “met” men from Nigeria that are pulling same stunt, so we’re not alone in this! As a family saying goes: “if it sounds too good to be true proceed with caution!” To DUBER: you just don’t have any sense of adventure my friend! Take care, but be careful of ones that have a photo or attachment for sure! They can be dangerous for your puter!

  34. for the lottery company as I heard they do not have people win if they never entered a lottery so if you get a email claiming you won the lottery, do not beleive it since you never entered the lottery. and paypal never asks for your bank pin.(oh and please don’t be like my mom who loses her wallet alot).

  35. I never received these scam e-mails until I posted something for sale on Craigslist and now I am overwhelmed with them. Piece of advise, do not post on Craigslist cause their seems to be no way to stop the scams from coming…….

  36. I received 4 letters a week, same/similar as above! And I used to FORWARD to the FBI. My favorite one is about the widow by (different names)laying on a hospital bed and about to die soon with cancer. Wanting to disburse her millions to the poor kids and to the orphans. One time I responded one of those famous letters. Since they want to hire me as their reps./secretary, I asked them to send my first $3,000 salary, before going further.Knowing that i will never hear from them anymore. I placed an ads on Craiglists about renting my house, by coincidence 3 doctors responded and all wanting to use it for their honeymoons!!!!!I responded to each one with different contents, but the most Imp. to remind them the payments must be in Cashiers check and Drawn in U.S Funds only!!! Damn SCAMMER NEVER heard from them again. Mariam Rose

    1. There’s actually a scam that targets yoga teachers. They pull our e-mail addresses off a national website of registered teachers. Do you know how poor yoga teachers are? The return on that one must be pathetic.

  37. Guys I’m sorry for those people, but would they ever learn: “Free cheese only in mouse trap!”
    No comments!

  38. The begining of another around of destruction of the Nigeria image. It is actually shameful and disgraceful that these young men would not give up at doing any thing to ruin another person’s life. I am ashamed. Plz spread the world so that they will not succeed in thier new advanture.

  39. Hi when i read this story about the scammers i just wanna ask questions. I was been scammed also by this people from Benin Republic. I just want to report them because of them i lost my job. I owe money to the bank that is why i was not able to go back in this country where i use to work.

    The problem is i am not a US citizen am an Asian so that is why i don’t have that priveleges of reporting them to the FBI or any government. Just wanna know if you could help me about this matter if i could contact anybody who could help me and report my complaint? Thank you.

  40. Two words… gullible and greed.

    Many comments have already pointed this out. It takes only one of those two traits, in varying degrees, for someone to be scammed by a a con. Unfortunately, some folks are “blessed” with both… and when a con finds one of those, it’s like they stumbled upon the “pot of gold” at the end of the rainbow… especially, if the mark also has assets and/or good credit.

    As someone also said, please pay attention to friends and relatives whom you think might be susceptible. Take extreme measures, if necessary, and contact law enforcement. Sometimes an authority figure can dissuade the mark from continuing to allow the bilking.

    And, like the “double-down” of a loser, sometimes obsession also becomes a factor, and law enforcement has had to threaten the mark with criminal charges to make them stop aiding and abetting the criminal.

    It’s all stranger than fiction, but these things do happen every day.


  41. I have received the FBI email 6 times in the last 2 weeks cause the bank in Nigeria is “real” and the “president” of the bank will verify the “5,000,000 USD” that is being reserved for me. Just send my info to the “FBI” and they will forward it to me. SAD :(

    My friend was scammed into cashing some counterfeit money orders at her bank. She sent some money to the east coast. Then the bank restricted her account while she was driving to the bank to pull out more money to send to someone else. Boy was she pissed when she got to the bank. But it was sad cause she wasn’t even looking for money…she just needed a new job!

    She emailed the person that she had been contacting and she told him she needed a reimbursement to cover the negative amount then she would wire her own money…to see what this guy was gonna do. He emails back saying that she needs to wire the rest of the money to the other person then he will reimburse her. Man what small balls this guy must have to ask for a measly $400.

    THIS WAS FROM CRAIGSLIST. BEWARE OF THE “MYSTERY SHOPPER” ADS ALSO. If they offer to send you money orders only for you to send money back after cashing it….ITS A SCAM…my friends money order had the “walmart” logo on it. If you get one, go verify it at walmart. I hope this will help someone.

  42. I have a way of dealing with these scammers. I write back and say I remember them from another life that we had a wonderful relationship and how disappointed I am they have turned to this life of crime. I beg them to stop, and then say I have forwarded their info to the authorities and then tell them to get a life. In all the time I have been doing this I have had only two of them write back. One told me to go have intercourse with myself and the other said I was very good at writing and asked if I would look over his scam letter and see how I could improve it. I am NOT kidding. I told him to go have intercourse with himself. Bottom line, my brother got scammed by these assholes and it was a long and elaborate process before they took him for about $25,000. He borrowed the last $10,000 from my dad and swore it was for equipment to improve his office. He told all his clients he was closing down because he was getting $2,000,000. Needless to say the family was pissed, my brother was mortified and it still hangs over his head to this day. Face it folks, if it sounds too good to be true, it is! Don’t be stupid.

  43. I recieve tons of those emails. like always i block them mark them as spam and go on my way.. but damn those guys know what they are doing they go abouts another way.. most of the time there are on chat sites, dating sites etc. I have been hit twice by them, and they dont ask for money or anything till you talk to them for about a month or more and their motives are all the same out over seas for their job and something happens mine was couple things first guy David Mark (has yahoo messanger where he was about to fly out to nigeria when one of his oil workers got injured and he needed my help.. then more and more stories where he got mugged etc. then he send me checks to hold for him till he got back to the states those checks and money orders were for large amounts and ask for me to cash one.. every time i tried to break away and not answer him. he kept more sweet talking or find your weaknesses to pull you back in. so dumb ass me cashed one luckly i waited for the bank before i sent him any money. and lo and behold that check soo bounced and luckly i waited and did not send him any money. till this day i will get an email from him stating he will send me money for all the support i gave him during that time.. but i will need to send him 500 for the money order process.. needless to say his con’s are not working on me and i just hit delet on the emails. I have kept his checks just in case feds ever want them.. which total little over 750,000 fack dollars lol
    The second guy was Perio Bonnie was in makeup sales. and stuck in west africa. I found him again on the same chat site couple months later of course under another name but instead of make up he was in furniture sales.
    I got lucky with both of them hitting on me at the same time i didnt become broke or in finance hell like others that i have read. I was only dumb enough to send a couple hundred to them. then i woke up after all their information didnt check out.. so now i dont deal with any guy who lives out of state or travels and is in another county.
    I have tried to save most of their emails and check and what other information that i was able to get from them which is probly worthless.
    and yes they can not spell anything.

  44. I am Nigerian, and for the record I completely detest what these guys do.

    I also receive these scam emails. However for every “Nigerian” scam email I get, I get literally hundreds of other scam emails about a range of things from viagra to Harvard doctoral diplomas. Somehow we don’t hear so much about these, perhaps because they are not “Nigeria”.

    Frankly I have very little sympathy for those that are scammed by these kinds of emails. To put some of the comments that has already been made on this blog in a different light, its the people that want to scam foolish Nigerians that get scammed.

    So wise up, there is no gold pot at the end of the rainbow, not all “Nigerian” scammers are Nigerian, work hard and stop expecting to “free” cash from “Nigerians” and all will be just fine!

    I love America and Americans though, I was in the Big Apple this past summer and I will be visiting again. I promise that I wont scam anyone -:)

  45. Duukori, yes, those poor, poor scammers. The victims should stop exploiting them immediately.

    Buying fake viagra (when you don’t have a prescription) and fake qualifications (when you clearly haven’t studied for it) is not a scam. It’s a straight forward sale of illicit goods.

    Being asked to help out a person in distress (some of these scams can be long-game, subtle affairs) with a side-chance of reimbursement above your original investment – is a confidence game.

    Not the same.

  46. To arkizzle:

    Well if selling me a diploma is not a scam, then I don’t know what a scam is. Have you tried ordering viagra or something else from those kind of scam emails and actually received anything remotely like what you ordered? In my book a scam is a scam.

    Who are the biggest internet fraudsters? “Nigerians” ?

    Its not hard to imagine how this whole thing started. They started with the really funny ones about trying to give money to some “beneficiaries”. These where the kind I received at first, and still do from time to time. When they saw that people where gullible enough to fall for that kind of crap, they continued. When it became more obvious, they adapted their message.

    Its simple, if you don’t really know someone don’t give important information to the person. If you told about a situation and you feel you must help out, do so and forget it. It’s your call.

    I am not defending scammers, like a ssid before there is no excuse for what they do.

    I am saying its time to look at the other side and really attack the problem from all sides. What seems to be going on here is kind of like always talking about Colombia and South American countries when it comes drug production and not talking much about the demand that drives it.

    If people stop falling for this kind of stuff, it will stop, period!

  47. I would like to mention that we got dozens of anonymous comments that read something like:

    Those stuppid peopel. They should of knowed those were scams by the bad grammer and speling.

    And, no, it wasn’t intentional irony.

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