Ministry of Propaganda

Ministry of Propaganda - 19/Sep/2006: "Dumb Scammers?"

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Dumb Scammers?

Earlier today I read about Rising Stakes in the Spam Wars. Apparently the spammers, phishers and scammers are getting more and more aggressive and sophisticated. I guess there must always be an exception to the rule, considering some of the mails I've received recently:

Andrew Bailey ( recently sent me an email introducing himself:

I am Andrew Bailey of International Private Banking at BANK OF ENGLAND ( I am contacting you concerning a deceased customer and an investment he placed under our banks management three years ago. I would respectfully request that you keep the contents of this mail confidential and respect the integrity of the information you come by as a result of this mail. (The rest is the usual 'deceased customer, no next of kin, need to get money out, will share proceeds' blurb)

Ahem, you work for the Bank of England? Are you sure, Andrew? Really sure? Have you checked what it says on their website? Or tried the 'Bank of England' Wikipedia entry? The Bank of England is a central bank, I very much doubt they have an 'International Private Banking' arm, there certainly isn't any mention of it on the website you so helpfully provided the link for. Meaning there can't be this strange nameless deceased customer. Well, may be your scam might work with someone outside of the UK (provided they don't work in banking or the finance industry), but you probably shouldn't send it to anyone in the UK.

Enough of that one, next one:

Funnily enough I'm currently looking for a job (and I'm German but live in the UK) so I found it interesting to recently find an email in German in one of my email accounts (I've got several) with the subject Personal dringend gesucht! (personnel urgently required). Then the same email in another account. And soon after in the third one. Strange that. The first one was from Sonny Vargas, the second from Sanford Darby and the third from Edwardo Santos. Yet the content was identical and all three claimed to be the personnel manager/director of a nameless international financial services company. All three writing to me in German.

Very strange that, I thought there can only be one personnel manager/director in a company. And even if there are several, they wouldn't send an identical mail from three different domains. I don't think I'm going to apply, especially as it looked like the usual money laundering stuff. Nein Danke, kein Interesse.

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