An old internet scam has hit my family--beware this scam!

@dragon54u (31663)
United States
December 12, 2009 8:21am CST
My sister and mother got an email from my cousin saying that she and her husband had been robbed in London, England and needed money. It was actually from her email account, someone had stolen it and changed the password so she could not access it. Little did they know that we are not stupid people! The jerks went through her emails and knew that she had children and all their names so that when my sister (who is a bit naive and very trusting) asked the name of her oldest son they were able to answer it and asked again when she could send money! Luckily, she called me and I was able to tell her it was a scam. They use a variation of this to call grandparents on the phone and pretend their grandchild needs money because they are stranded somewhere. My cousin has another email now. Little did the cretins know that my cousin is poor as a churchmouse, disabled, and would never be able to afford to go abroad! So watch out! If one of your relatives or friends emails you for money, don't fall for it.
6 people like this
22 responses
@uath13 (8207)
• United States
12 Dec 09
I hadn't heard of this one. My family would laugh their a** off. They know I haven't got the money to even take a vacation much less go abroad.
3 people like this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
12 Dec 09
Yeah, me, too! I laughed when my sister told me about it and she couldn't understand why I would be laughing when my cousin was stuck in England. Most of my family is just surviving and don't have any money to travel with! My sister finally saw the humor. Besides, my cousin isn't stupid and would have gone to the consulate rather than email her family. Scams like this depend on people having no common sense. If we'd all use our brains, they wouldn't make a dime!
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45640)
12 Dec 09
Thanks for that. How awful for them. I have to say that there's no way that my family would contact me for money. They know just how well off I am in that department. They might e mail offering some though. Like that nice Nigerian man who wants to push $10,000,000 through my account. Perhaps he's a cousin. I must ask him!
2 people like this
@Hatley (164389)
• Garden Grove, California
12 Dec 09
hi pike my uncle was in Bulgaria a place Ihave only read about but I was to get 20 million,they were not pikers at all. so I wrote back and said just send me the twenty million first email it and then we will see about my information to you. odd, really odd they never sent the money, so strange. and I never heard from them again. oh money easy come, easy go .he he
• Philippines
17 May 10
I have the same story but its from an officemate email add... Like your sister and mother, i asked some questions and the hacker was not able to answer them all coz I don't usually send my officemate a message regarding our office to her personal email add... The same reason why the hacker doesn't know anything about our work... And even if the hacker answered my questions successfully, I stil cannot send him any money coz I don't have money And my officemate knows that too... So it is very suspecious and definitely UNBELIEVABLE!!!! why me???
2 people like this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
18 May 10
I wondered the same thing till I realized those scum don't know if we have money or not, they just grab a bunch of emails and hope for the best. Horrible people, I shudder to think about when they finally have to pay the price for their bad deeds.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
18 May 10
yeah that is right... I am sure they will harvest the fruit of their wrong deeds eventually... They planted wrong tree and they will pay for that... I hate scammers!
1 person likes this
@Thoroughrob (11750)
• United States
14 Dec 09
Nothing surprises me, it just keeps getting better and better. I am glad that you did not fall for it. Thanks for the heads up.
2 people like this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
17 Dec 09
Hey, how is your son? I never got notice that you had replied, stumbled upon this by luck. I hope our prayers have been answered and he is alright?
1 person likes this
@Thoroughrob (11750)
• United States
17 Dec 09
I am not getting notifications very often. My son is doing well right now. He is still on antibiotics since March. Still looking ahead, rods will be coming back out, just a matter of when they do it. Thanks for listening and being there. It helps to know that there are people that care and are praying.
1 person likes this
@bunnybon7 (38424)
• Holiday, Florida
16 Dec 09
yes i wish everyone on the internet was this careful and perhaps they'd stop even wasting their time. i've known about this since '95 when my employer, an elderly man, had been checking his email and it said to call western union right away as his caregiver (me, it mentioned my name) was stuck out of town and needed money. luckily they didnt realise his daughter was there (must have been someone knew i was on vacation) and she called me right away. he didnt know how to transfer money online anyway i told her i dont know what they were talking about. she figured it was a scam then and told her dad never to even try it without asking about that person first. he was so upset thinking something had happened to me, i had to talk to him on the phone. poor old guy. he had become like a kid.
2 people like this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
17 Dec 09
Poor man! But how blessed you were to have someone so concerned about you! There's a special place that's not very nice reserved in the afterlife for people like those scammers.
1 person likes this
@vnrsudhan (1514)
• India
12 Dec 09
hi dragon54u, thanks for letting the community know about this old-new scam...we'll watch out for it... and also double check if they are the ones who are really contacting us,and besides here our family doesnt actually have the habit of sending money over the internet and neither do we have any relatives abroad...so i guess it would be pretty easy for us...
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
12 Dec 09
If I had not heard of this years ago, I may have thought twice about it, as they had a lot of her personal information--they got it from reading her emails to her friends and family. So yes, be very careful even if the person can answer questions you ask. If I had not known about it, I would have certainly called her. It's always best to check, you are right!
2 people like this
• Malaysia
12 Dec 09
Hi, Dragon! I realize there are so many scams out there, but I never heard of this one. Thank you for posting it here because sometimes who knows when in time of emergency and urgency and wanting to help out, we might fall into this scam. So, it's better to take an extra pre-caution by spreading this type of crimes. Glad to know that you could verify that it was a fraud. Thanks again! Have a nice weekend!
2 people like this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
12 Dec 09
I'm very glad I could educate people, I hate for people to get robbed by horrid jerks like those scammers. Remember, it happens on the telephone, too, they call and say they are your grandson, cousin, etc and ask you to wire money. Be careful and have a wonderful day!
1 person likes this
• Boston, Massachusetts
13 Dec 09
Hi Dragon, That is also happening here in our country. since majority of the couple here work and only person left at home are the children and our caregivers. they are innovative enough to get all the information about you and your family and make use of it to collect money. Creating a scene that the one of the kids is in the hospital and needs money, that she was requested by the landlady to pick up money to pay a loan or get her jewelries as she will be attending a gathering--all lies and scam. Even in text -SMS scams very rampant here too. if you are not smart and quick you will be in trouble!
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
13 Dec 09
It's all over the world, unfortunately. I wish someone could catch and convict these people because there are many that fall for it because of their loved ones.
• Boston, Massachusetts
13 Dec 09
how i wish it will happen soon. but i doubt--it's been happening for such a long time and yet their still there doing it the best innovative way they can. i don't if they have the conscience for doing this to people...
1 person likes this
@hotsummer (10466)
• Philippines
13 Dec 09
i received some scam email myself many times. like 3 times a week. but what i do this morning as i got bored deleting them, i replied to one scam email. and answered that i don't need . better donate the money to other people cause i don't want to be rich. cause the email is asking me to help her to get her money from one bank. i believe she was asking some money for me to do that. so no way, i will send. i am playing with her or him, just trying to make it appear i believe the email or i think they may get that i am just trying to play with their game.
1 person likes this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
13 Dec 09
I had a friend that did that, playing along with the scammer. It turned very nasty and he ended up getting a virus--there were never any attachments in the emails so he doesn't know how it happened but it did. I would be cautious of playing with people that are so evil. Good luck!
@hotsummer (10466)
• Philippines
13 Dec 09
i just won't open another email. i know what is spam email anyawys, i will just delete every email from whom i don't know where it came from.
1 person likes this
@anne25penn (3310)
• Philippines
13 Dec 09
I hate crooks who steal from people. Here in my country, the scam is the same. They would call and tell whoever answers that their relative has been in an accident and needs money for the hospital. They would even ask to bring everything of value. I am not sure if anyone has fallen victim to this kind of scam, but my mother has been a victim of a robbery where a pregnant lady and her "husband" asked for directions. They practically kidnapped my mom, got her in a vehicle and drove her somewhere and asked her to withdraw money though ATM. Then they took her jewelry. Thankfully, they did not hurt her but it has been a very traumatic incident for my mother.
1 person likes this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
13 Dec 09
That is horrible!! I hope your mother has recovered and has no lasting effects from that kidnapping. Did they ever find the dirtbags that did that to her? The phone scam is here, too. Mostly targeting old people with grandchildren and it actually works because our elders are trusting and naive.
• Philippines
13 Dec 09
No, the crooks are still out there. We just never let her leave the house alone because crooks really target old people. I have seen my mom stop when people approach her, when if it were younger people we would have ignored them.
• United States
12 Dec 09
Nothing surprises me but wouldn't they think that most people wouldn't have the money to travel abroad. Or do they just think people go out on a whim to such a far place w/o mentioning it to anyone? Probably mentioned London because that's the country they'd want you to send the money too. I'm glad you and your family were wise enough to know that it was bogus.
1 person likes this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
12 Dec 09
Not only bogus, just ridiculous! We're all poor as churchmice--well, not that bad but we do well to pay all the bills and maybe enjoy a movie once a month and some months not even that! The thought of my cousin going to London made me laugh, which puzzled my sister till I explained! If people would use common sense, these scams wouldn't make a dime.
• United States
1 Aug 10
As easy as that is to believe that's why i try not to access information except from my phone and my home computer. It's hard to understand but where people get in trouble is when they use public computers. There are emails saying you won the lottery as well, when your email was submitted to some site and it's usually a site you've never heard of. Also, there are certain sites like Fed Ex who has had frauded emails going around telling people to go pick up something and there was never nothing to pick up atleast that was sent from them anyways. i called Fed ex when i got one of them and they had me send it to them so they could track down where it came from. I hope you don't have to go through that again. good luck.
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
1 Aug 10
Thanks! I have stopped filling out free offers and stuff like that, anything to stop my email from being circulated.
• United States
13 Dec 09
Thank you for the heads up. But I'm one who ask when where and how...Plus if you can't call me on my phone and think that I'm going to communicate with you through emails that person is just as crazy as hell(LOL) But anyway its also good to have your IM with a different or backup password because I to had my email addy tampered with and the person send emails to almost everyone in my address book(spamming thenm) but I was able to go to my profile and keep my orinigal email addy and change my sign in name and password and put a secruity link on it.
1 person likes this
@mkings (289)
• Germany
13 Dec 09
I once recieved and email too but,this time there person told me that,if fact it was a she and I believe its was a he who was pretending to be a she. This is what there person told me that she is the child of and exminister who is Congo,and that due to the war he father was kill and she succeded to run to Senegal and she is in a refuge camp. She also said that she is writting from a pastors house and that there are not allowed to us computer and cell phone The end was that she has millions of dollars in a bank that i should my contact and the will process all the information and send my the money but i knew it was a scam so i did not send any imformation Beware of Scamms
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
13 Dec 09
It's rather insulting, isn't it? They think we are very stupid or very naive. I don't know why some people respond and get robbed but I wish we could find and arrest those that do these things.
@checkmail (2042)
• India
13 Dec 09
Hello dragon54u this is checkmail and thanks for sharing in your scam experience with us, this type of scam seems to be an new one.Yeah earlier also am rec various emails from various dubiest authorities to collect mine big money from their banks.But its really an query to ask ourself, would anybody lend you such an amount.Even there have been many scams exposed by some inexperienced net user who falled for such scams.Well nice knowing that you too survived the scam, hope you could get an required firewall for your personal info security.Me too am trying mine best type of security to avoid such misleaks, and virus pro.Wish you luck, fight scam.Happy Mylotting.
1 person likes this
@cutepenguin (6457)
• Canada
13 Dec 09
I've gotten similar emails from people I barely know. Fortunately, I could tell right away because well, the writing style didn't sound the same at all. Plus, i barely knew the person in real life, so they wouldn't email me for help.
1 person likes this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
13 Dec 09
They figure out of all those contacts, one will be dim enough to reply. They are counting on the fact that there is a dismaying lack of common sense in the world today.
@gabs8513 (48714)
• United Kingdom
13 Dec 09
Dragon I am so glad that your Sister rang you I was not aware that this scam is still going on. I am really surprised as this one has been going for a while now, so why is no one catching on to them The other that was also from London was one that they where in a Hotel and had been robbed of their money, that they needed a certain amount (which went into thousands of pounds) to pay their Bill and get their back to their own Country I just do not get how these People are doing this and getting away with it
1 person likes this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
13 Dec 09
I guess it's really hard to track them down on the internet, especially if they use an anonymizer that puts them in Russia or Vienna when they are actually in the States or Brazil. Yep, it's been going on for years and they do it on the telephone, too, to steal from grandparents who think their grandchildren are in trouble. They're nothing more than dirtbags, lower than the belly of a snake.
@trisha27 (3497)
• United States
12 Dec 09
Wow, I can't believe that people spend time out of their every day lifes scamming people and then on top of that steal peoples email addresses for their own personal use. I think the best way to avoid something such as that is to never give anyone your password that you do not know or trust. But thank you for informing me of such scam. I hope that there are more people that do not fall for such scams as these.
1 person likes this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
13 Dec 09
My cousin must have had a password that was simple to figure out. Some scammers have machines that spend up to an hour trying different passwords! These people make some serious money but I doubt it will bring them any pleasure in the end. A lot of people fall for this kind of thing, unfortunately.
@enola1692 (3325)
• United States
12 Dec 09
some people now adays would steal from anyone makes me sick thank god your mom seen though the scam sad thing is somepeople wont see though the scam till its to late
1 person likes this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
13 Dec 09
People like this use the telephone, too, calling grandparents and pretending to be their grandchildren who are in trouble and need money. Those scammers, I'm sure, have a special place reserved for them after they die.
@kaylachan (4776)
• Daytona Beach, Florida
12 Dec 09
If they are that desperate for money then chances are they can't afford to e-mail you anyway. Lucky for you that was caught. I used to get random spam asking for my banking information and what not. I simply twitched and hit delete as quickly as I could. After all people claim scams like this aren't "common", but you know what.... they are.
1 person likes this
@dragon54u (31663)
• United States
12 Dec 09
I get tons of scams in my inbox as well as my spam filter. I don't even look at them! Especially the ones that mention money in the subject "make $56 per hour!" "congratulations! You've won the Irish Lottery!" etc. People like that make me sick, preying on those that have no common sense.