As someone who cares about others, here's a warning about scam emails
March 8, 2011 11:42am CST
As a person who has sat by and watched another person play the scam artists, I want to let you know what I've learned from him over the last few months, and about scammers too. Scammers who claim that you're the only next of kin for someone, or have an ATM card for you, etc only want 2 things. Your money and your personal information. These scammers have purchased your email address from a list that someone collects over the years, then they email you out of the blue with some subject line that really grabs your attention. Or, they catch you from a website where you've advertised for one reason or another, and now have your email address if you happen to respond back. Then they commence the spam/scam emails. The biggest thing to look for in these emails, is where the person is coming from. If they give you a location as to where they are, don't always believe it. Check the IP address through the headers of your email. A lot of these scammers claim to be from overseas banks, and they want you to open an offshore bank account so they can "send" you money. The biggest problem here is that most banks don't charge fees to open accounts. This is where the scammer first tries to sucker you. (S)he says that you need to pay them to open the account, and they get the first amount of money from you. Once they've played you here, they know they have you reeled in and will go further. After getting you to pay to open the account, they will put the "money" into the account, and tell you to transfer it to your own account. By this time, all of your sensitive information such as your bank account numbers are visible to them. You get to the last part of the transfer, and WHAM! it asks you for a tax code or some other code. If you don't have it, you need to talk to the bank manager who has emailed you. So you email them back and they tell you that it's going to cost you money to get the tax code. Low and behold, more money out of your pocket, into the hands of the scammer. So once you've paid this, you expect to get the money. You may get it in your bank account, but by this time, it's too late for you. It's fraudulently obtained money, and when it's found out that you have it, the authorities go after you. You are the only one they can find, as the scammer has deceived you by giving you false information, including their name and phone number. The IP address wont even be for the country they claim to be in. Ignorance isn't an excuse and wont be allowed in court. So be careful what you do. Another way that scammers pull at your heart strings, is to tell you that they need you to pay the fees so that they can afford the medical care for their injured family. This one got at my roommate, even though he said he wouldn't pay anything. This scammer said that he and his family were in a terrible car wreck and that one of 2 sons was dead, and his wife and other son were critical. But he was miraculously ok, didn't get hurt at all. Watch for people like that, they will try to get more money from you. If someone sends you a photo of the "money" you're supposed to get, and it's in steamer trunks, never believe it. That photo has been going around for years and years, I've seen it 3 times over the years. No one can ship money like that, you can only take so much with you, even if you are a "diplomat" as most of them say they are. Chances are, there's a lot of crap in those chests, and just a little bit of real money in them, if they do manage to get through customs. But like I said, this isn't real. So, please be wise and careful. The best thing to do is not to respond to these emails. As soon as you do, you set yourself up for fraud, identity theft and all kinds of other problems.
8 Mar 11
yes, this is becoming a bigger and bigger problem. Earlier today I read about an old lady who got scammed and paid 1000 dollars because she thought she then would get a much bigger amount. I've even recieved scam mail myself but I recognized it as scam. A lot of people can't tell when they are being scammed so I think enlightenment is the best solution to this problem. And common sense and like you say be careful and wise.
• United States
9 Mar 11
Also bear in mind the ones that need agents in the US for their overseas business, to process funds. I had a friend on here who fell for that and lost all of her life savings, and then later lost her husband too because of it. Or the checks that come in the mail that look real and they want you to mystery shop a Western Union money gram. There are too many scams out there. I cannot believe that your friend has fallen for this.
• United States
8 Mar 11
Any email, sms and or letter that asks of me to send in money I steer clear of. I guess I live my life with the thought that we do not get anything for doing nothing and it is one rule that makes me leary from most offers today. I see you have been scammed once before, very sad and I thank you for the alert. There are many today who do get such emails and or information and the hopes of getting something steers clear thinking. I do hope many more read your discussion and are aware that scam is on the rise.