And who the hell are you??

I rarely check filtered messages on Messenger. Today I did and cleaned up about 18 months worth of attempted contacts. Most I just deleted but this one deserves a reply. I won’t reply to this person directly because I don’t want to encourage him, but I’ll do it here (damn, I should have kept his message so I could send him the link to this – oh well, I can always track him down through Facebook.)

Here’s his message from June 26. Keep in mind I’ve never communicated with this person and he is not anywhere among my friends.

Hi love
In a cold and sometimes cruel world, your sweet love lifts me up and gives me peace and happiness. You are the most precious gift that life gave me and I am so grateful I met you.

Odiugho Adaoro

First off, I don’t permit people I’ve never met to call me “love”. That implies a familiarity we don’t share. So unless you’re my grandmother or my significant other just don’t. As you can see from this, it just riles me.

Odi – you don’t mind if I call you “Odi” do you? – sending a stranger that kind of message is almost guaranteed to elicit a few comments, such as that in the title of this blog. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that you saw my profile picture and fell in love. You should have gone beyond the photo. Had I received such a message from someone I care about, I’d love it, but from you, I find it creepy.

From what I could find out from the minimal contact information available through Messenger, I see he studied at some institute in Lagos. The fact he’s from or in Nigeria automatically sends up red flares. I know it’s a generalization, but so many online scams seem to originate in Nigeria (Nigerian prince anyone?) that I view any correspondence from there, unless in response to something I’ve sent, with suspicion.

One more thing Odi, such a message is not the best way to attempt to start an online friendship with someone. My first impression is that you’re infatuated with a photograph and to me it approaches stalking. So, in future, just don’t. This message assumes, falsely I might add, that I find, or will find, you just as fascinating as you apparently find me. No, I’m not flattered. The comment in the message “I am so grateful I met you” is also very off-putting for the only place we’ve met is in your mind.

Oh yes, also as I said above, I already have someone in my life.

Finally, as I said in the title “who the hell are you?”


The Nigerian prince has moved

I received the following email in a junk file this morning. I’ve removed the email address to keep myself out of trouble with WordPress (again).

From: MrDanielMminele

Direct Phone No: + 27 82 4026 229
Private Email: contact.danielmminel@

Dear Sir/Madam,

Peace Be Upon You,

My name is Mr. Daniel Mminele, I am currently working with a Financial Institution based here in South Africa. We offer short and long terms Loans which are tailored to meet important financing needs in the Agricultural, Industrial and Constructional production circle in the whole of the Southern Africa and beyond.

I am contacting you to partner with me to secure the funds US$ 42 Million United States Dollars deposited in the custody of our Bank here in South Africa by LATE MR. ALEXANDER VEREMEEVSKIY, a Russian Businessman and Investor who was involve in the Fly-Dubai Flight 981, a Boeing 737- 800, an International Passenger Flight that crashed during an aborted Landing due to poor weather at Rostov-on-Don Airport, Russia, on 19th of March 2016, resulting in the deaths of all the 62 Passengers and Crew Members on Board, May their souls rest in Peace. The fund was deposited as an Investment fund in 2015 with an open beneficiary. The fund has been with the Bank without anybody coming up for the claims.

I honestly seek your assistance to move these funds into your custody for safe keeping and investment purposes as the depositor has no known Next of kin. I have all the Legal documents necessary to claim the funds as I am directly involved in the deposits. All I need to do is to make you the beneficiary of the fund by filling your name in the appropriate documents and immediately move the funds out of its present place in your name to your account for safe keeping. The funds will be used for Investment purposes in your country as i have planned on investing my own share in a lucrative business venture and settling with my family.

I decided to this as i know all the circumstances surrounding the deposits and knowing very well that the depositor of the fund will not come back to claim the funds since he is deceased. I will send to you all the documents relating to this deposit and direct you on how to apply for the fund. I will give you further details when I receive a positive response from you on this issue. I will ensure all procedures to see the successful completion of this project.

I assure you that this transaction is 100% Risk Free .Be rest assured that we will not encounter any difficulty as the person directly involved in approving the release of the fund is also participating in this transaction. This transaction is Legal and we propose a 60-30% sharing pattern once the fund is transferred to your Account while the remaining 10% will be for all the expensive we might incur during the cause of the transfer.

Please keep this transaction very confidential and let me know if you will be of any assistance.

Best Regards,
Mr. Daniel Mminele.
Direct Phone No: + 27 82 4026 229
Private Email: contact.danielmminele@

The information in the Email and/or attachment(s) is covered by the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, 18 U.S.C. 2510-2521. It may be confidential and/or privileged and is intended solely for the person or entity to which it is addressed. If you are not the intended recipient or an agent responsible for delivering it to the intended recipient, you have received it in error. The review, dissemination, copying, or taking of any action based on the contents thereof is strictly prohibited. If you have received this Email in error, please advise the sender by reply Email and then delete it and any attachment(s) from your system immediately. Thank you. *********************************************************************************************************************************************************

Interesting, isn’t it? First, this wasn’t sent to me personally. The “Dear Sir/Madam” is a good indicator this is a shotgun style scam. The generic salutation is designed to rope in anyone gullible enough to fall for it. Another sign this is intended to rope in as many people as possible is the “Peace Be Upon You”, which is a common salutation for those who follow Islam. Again, make the mark feel comfortable.

Notice this person doesn’t name the “bank” which employs him, nor does he use an email address that would appear to be that of a financial institution. The amount of $42 million US is certainly attractive. Based on the offered split, the recipient would be looking at a $12.6 million windfall. If this were real. The specific details of the crash are intended to encourage the mark to check to see if such a crash actually took place. I didn’t check it myself but presume the sender used an actual accident to show the veracity of the balance of his claims. But to my mind, the details are too specific, almost as if they were taken directly from a crash report.

The disclaimer at the bottom of the email is a nice touch but, if this is purportedly being sent from South Africa (no city – just a generic “South Africa”), why is he quoting US law and not the corresponding South African legislation?

Consider this as well: If someone is investing over forty million in any currency, chances are this is not an individual’s own funds, but if from a company. And you can be certain a company would know where $42,000,000 of their money is at any given time.

And now, the kicker in this: The email showed as being sent from: “Mr.DanielMminele” with a return email address at gmail. The actual sender turned out to be someone using the address “m_h_bruce834″ with a Yahoo address.

So, if you were to fall for this and send Mr Bruce the requested information, you wouldn’t find twelve point six million magically appearing in your account. It is much more likely you’d find your own balance diminishing at an astounding rate.

If you get this, or anything like this, don’t fall for it. As I said in the title, the Nigerian prince has moved, but it’s still the same scam.


An embarrassment of riches

That title can be taken two ways.  First is the three (!) scam emails I found in my spam today.  I love these as they give me something I can be nasty with when I write my posting.  The second way is the 9.5 million dollars these people are willing to send me in exchange for a modest sum of money and various bits of personal information.

This will be a long posting since I’m going to cover all three in this one blog.

The first one won’t take long. On September 27, in my posting “Now they’re using Benin” I mention the president of Benin, one Dr Yayi Boni had authorized a payment of a million  and a half to me for some reason.  Whatever I’m thinking about this latest version of this message I probably said better in that first posting.

The second one is very interesting.  It doesn’t mention a dollar amount and in fact appears to be some kind of warning.  Here’s the message:

Mr.Ibrahim Lamode <>
19:56 (19 hours ago)
to undisclosed recipients

THE Economic And Financial Crime Commission (EFCC)
15A Awolowo Road
Ikoyi, Lagos
Lagos Nigeria,

From:Mr.Ibrahim Lamode,the chairman of The Economic And Financial
Crime Commission

Your Kind Attention needed:

This is to officially inform you, that it has come to our notice with the help of our Intelligence Monitoring Network System that you are having an illegal Transaction with some Impostors claiming to be official representatives locally and internationally.

Without taking much of your time, my name is Mr.Ibrahim Lamode , the chairman of the Economic And Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

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/ compensation Payment.

Therefore we have contacted the Economic And Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) on your behalf, in other to avoid any further complication or deviation of your funds; you are advice to stop all
further contact with this shameless people who are trying to rip out money from you and damage the good name of our country.

Since we the Economic And Financial Crime Commission is fully involved in this transaction, you are assured that this 100% risk free it is our duty to protect the American Citizens and other countries too from being rip off their hard earn money.

You are advice to contact the fadral ministry of fanice (FMF) stating your Contract/Inheritance/ compensation Funds value to them via email, to enable them with the remittance of your funds according to the way you want them to pay you.

Name: Dr .Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala


Kindly contact The Federal Ministry Of Finance (FMF) today, and send the below information to them to enable them with the remittance of your funds according to the way you want to receive your funds.

1.Full Name:
2.Home Address:
3.Direct Phone Number:
4.Your Inheritance/compensation sum value:
5.Amount which you lost previously:

Mr.Ibrahim Lamode
EFCC chairman
Federal Republic of Nigeria

I love the line “you are advice to stop all further contact with this shameless people who are trying to rip out money from you and damage the good name of our country.”  Excuse me?  This is coming from Nigeria, the country whose calling code – 419 – has become synonymous with electronic scams.  Obviously the reason you’ve never received the promised millions in the past is you were dealing with scam artists, not authorized government scam artists – er, “agents”.  Yet it is sad how many people will fall for this.  IT’S STILL A SCAM PEOPLE, JUST WORDED A LITTLE DIFFERENTLY. And do not under any circumstances give them your personal information.

Then we have this one, worth $8,000,000 US:

11:11 (3 hours ago)
to undisclosed recipients

Attention: Beneficiary,

I have been informed by the CHEVRON/ LTD to anticipate your message as this office has been assigned to handle the payment of your grant donation prize and also to alert you that your previous mail was received here on this office desk and content clearly documented. I would advise you follow the instructions given to you and your Donation parcel will be sent to you fully sealed within the next 24hours. A cheque has been issued in your name and we have concluded the processing of all documents t hat will facilitate the clearance of the cheque in your Bank.

This documents includes the following:


These documents have been securely sealed and packed for security reasons which makes it impossible for anyone to view it until its been delivered to you. Find below our delivery options which you are required to choose the one that is most convenient to you to enable the delivery of your parcel to the address which is sent by you to this office.

I want you to indicate once more your mode of delivery for the purpose of documentation in the ECOWAS HEAD OFFICE.

DHL Cost of delivery
Mailing: US $100.00
Vat:US $70.00
Insurance:US $200.00

FEDEX Cost of delivery
Mailing:US $100.00
VAT US $50.00
Insurance: US $200.00

Mailing: US$50.00
VAT US$20.00
Insurance: US$200.00

All three options are 24hours delivery after shipment


Due to the diplomatic content of your parcel, it will be illegal to send it without being insured as it will violate the federal delivery rules governing diplomatic parcel delivery. This means payment for the insurance fee must be made before the parcel is sent to avoid risk. This is because of some bad experience we had in the past.

We can not afford to re-issue your cheque if anything goes wrong. In this case payment for the insurance fee is absolutely compulsory, while the mailing fee should be paid to any of the above listed delivery company you choose at the point of delivery. Your prize is protected by a hardcover insurance policy, which makes it impossible to deduct any amount from the money before remittance.

This means that the above insurance charges cannot be deducted from the prize and hence must be provided by you before your parcel is shipped.

This is in accordance with section 13(1)(n) of the international gambling act as adopted in 1993 and amended on 3RD july 1996 by the constitutional assembly. This is to protect recipients and to avoid misappropriation of funds.

You have to contact PAYMENT STAFF AT THE ECOWAS HEAD OFFICE now with your information and choice of delivery company among the list above for the delivery of your package with this information bellow;

OFFICE NUMBER: +234 810 4796 014

1, Full Name………………………
2, Address of Residence:……………..
3, country from:……………………
4, Telephone Number:………………
5, Occupation……………….
6, Age:………………

Kindly give me a call immediately you receive this mail.

As is common recently, the email is sent from China.  And once again “undisclosed recipients” just means they’re hoping someone will bite and for 8 mil, I’m sure someone will.  Again, no reason given for this “grant prize”.  And why, if as claimed, the benefactor is “Chevron/Texaco”, why is a letter from the Nigerian High Court of Justice necessary.  Again, you have to pay the shipping costs of at least $270 and give up all kinds of information.  DON’T DO IT!!  You will be out those shipping fees; will have given up the kind of information that makes identity theft easy, and you ain’t never gonna see the 8 mil.

And that concludes today’s lesson.  Enjoy your day and remember to hug an artist – we need love too.

(If you really want to part with your money, I understand you can get a real deal on some oceanfront property outside Prince Albert Saskatchewan. [Check your map – Prince Albert is in the middle of the Canadian prairies about 1,000 miles from any salt water]) 🙂