I can’t believe people fall for this

Here are two particularly good (that is bad) scam emails that have arrived here at My Porch:

Dearest One, My name is Mr Johnson Mark, a 20 years old boy undergraduate. I am only son of Mr. and Miss. kone Mark, My father was a very wealthy Gold and Diamond Merchant in Monrovia the Gold Capital city of republic of Liberia in West Africa based in Burkina Faso west Africa, my father was poisoned to death by his business associates while my mother died when I am little and my father took me so special because I am the only child. Before the death of my father on 4th June 2007 in a hospital here in Burkina Faso he secretly called me and told me that he deposited some a huge sum of $14 million Dollars ($14, OOO, OOO USD) and the inside a bank which he deposited with a bank of Africa here in Burkina Faso as family saves. He also made me to understand that it was because of this wealth he was poisoned while on a business trip with them and he instructed me to look for a foreign partner who will help me retrieve this fund out from the bank of Africa then. On the 30th of December 2007 my uncle fly to London with his children. With all that my father left behind, just because I am a small boy and I do not have any right in my father property. My uncle seized all my father’s companies and properties because of our tradition believe that I’m a small boy i don’t no anything to do with money. I was left with nothing and dropped out of school because of financial difficulties and my uncle’s wicked attitude. Although I have contacted the bank of Africa they confirmed the lodgement to me My purpose of contacting you is for you to help me, as late father advised me at his sick bed.1) To transfer this amount to your location,2) To make arrangement for me to come to your country to continue my education.3) To utilize this money by investing it in good business. I am now under hidings to safe my life from any accidental harm that might befall me from them. Please tell me if you will be of assistance to me after your good considerations I am willing to reward you with 35% of the money for your good assistance. As for the money I hope you can have them for your self.. I will be glad if you will get back to me soon to tell me of your interest so that I will give you the contact information of the bank for you to contact them on my behalf as I will be introducing you. I am pleading to you with the name of Almighty God to help me out of this problem. With tiers on my eyes here as I am written you this mail. I am kindly waiting for your response MAY GODBLESS YOU, All my love, Mr Johnson Mark

Or how about this one from Mr. Buba Ouedo:

Dear friend

How are you doing with your family? Hope fine, please pay attention and understand my reason of contacting you today through this email, my name is Mr Buba Ouedo, bill and exchange manager in bank of Africa. in my department, during the auditing of this year 2009, i discovered an abounded sum of ($3.5m) three million five hundred thousand us dollars which belonging to a deceased customer of this bank he was involved on Friday December 26TH plane crash posted 11.15amest (16.15gmt)2003 at Benin .

i desperately need your assistance to secure and move this huge sums of money left behind by my late client to the tune of $3.500.000,(Three Million Five Hundred thousand us dollars) out from bank of Africa to your own account, he executed contract through department of work and housing here in this country and the mentioned money above is his money left in our bank before his death. Meanwhile, for your smoothness of this transaction, i will pay you 40% of the total sum for your co-operation in this matter. if you know that you are interested and capable to handle this business transaction,contact me as soon as possible.

Yours faithfully,
Mr Buba Ouedo.

What do you think, should I do it?

8 thoughts on “I can’t believe people fall for this

  1. Lucille December 13, 2009 / 1:22 pm

    Good heavens. I've heard about these but never read one. How elaborately penned they are. I think they would make a great starting point for a novel.


  2. Diane December 13, 2009 / 1:49 pm

    OMG……I just watch an Intervention segment of A&E, where this husband/father in North Carolina, who was addicted to morphine, became hooked on the internet and fell for these scam letters. The family actually lost their home and savings because he could not stop sending $$$ believing he won some huge windfall, if he would just send them the tax or processing amounts requested. UNBELIVABLE!


  3. claire December 13, 2009 / 2:17 pm

    I have actually received about five of these letters before.. scary!


  4. Teresa December 13, 2009 / 2:49 pm

    There was a story on This American Life on NPR a while back about a guy who answered these letters in order to scam the scammers. It was pretty interesting to hear about the cat and mouse game.

    My favorite of these that I ever got (and the scariest in some ways) was one that came from an e-mail address of someone that I knew and talked about getting stranded when traveling and urgently needed money wired to his account. The language was every bit as elaborate and convolulted as in these e-mails, so it was obvious it wasn't my friend. But the *best* part was that it started with a statement that said something to the effect of “forgive my garbled language. The computer system here will not allow me to write in standard English.” That made me laugh!


  5. Ti December 14, 2009 / 12:32 am

    I know an elderly person that fell for one of these scams and lost his entire savings. It's sad really. I got one the other day from wellsfargo@oneplace.net (if you can believe it) and it was pretty legit looking. I imagine all sorts of folks fell for it.


  6. Thomas at My Porch December 14, 2009 / 10:36 am

    Lucille: I agree they would make a great starting point for a novel.

    Diane: At least his addiciton could help explain his gullibility.

    Claire: I have been getting tons of them lately. I remember the days when they used to come by actual mail.

    Teresa: My computer won't let write in standard English either.

    Ti: It always frustrates me the most when it happens to old people. I have seen people who have gone their whole adult lives knowing that if something is too good to be true it is, only to succumb to something like this in their twilight years. And the perpetrators really make me made, like those pirates off of Somalia. Grr.


  7. Jeane December 14, 2009 / 6:10 pm

    I used to get these kinds of emails from time to time, but haven't seen any in a while. They always crack me up- but it's very sad that some people fall for the scam, especially the elderly. How awful.


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