Like too many of us, I get a lot of junk e-mail. Fortunately, most of it goes into my spam folder. A recent one came from the “Anti-Terrorist And Monetary Crimes Division” of the FBI, but signed by Mr. Robert Mueller, the director, informing me that they have “have completed an investigation on an International Payment in which was issued to you by an International Lottery Company. With the help of our newly developed technology (International Monitoring Network System)” – WOW! – “we discovered that your e-mail address was automatically selected by an Online Balloting System, this has legally won you the sum of $2.4million USD from a Lottery Company outside the United States of America.”
Yay, I’m practically rich!
“You will be required to settle the following bills directly to the Lottery Agent in-charge of this transaction whom is located in Cotonou, Benin Republic. According to our discoveries, you were required to pay for the following,
(1) Deposit Fee’s ( IMF INTERNATIONAL CLEARANCE CERTIFICATE )
(3) Shipping Fee’s ( This is the charge for shipping the Cashier’s Check to your home address)
The total amount for everything is $96.00 We have tried our possible best to indicate that this $96.00 should be deducted from your winning prize but we found out that the funds have already been deposited IMF and cannot be accessed by anyone apart from you the winner, therefore you will be required to pay the required fee’s.”
This sounds pretty authentic. Odd numbering, bad punctuation, and everything.
Seriously, usually I ignore these things, but in this case, I thought I ought to report it to the REAL FBI, in case someone else is
foolish naive enough to believe this rubbish. Surprisingly the FBI doesn’t seem to have an e-mail address in Estonia. I went to the FBI website and reported this scam to the The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), a partnership between the FBI “and the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C), funded in part by the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA).” I dutifully filled on the form, then submitted it. Or tried. It took me FOUR times to send it because the word verification was so tricky – it’s really difficult to tell the difference between m and rn, for instance, when any given letter has TWO colors.
So when I got a SECOND, totally different message from the FBI in Atlanta (Japanese e-mail), I didn’t bother reporting it. Ya got to make it easier, FBI.
My URL shows up in Dustbury’s spam. Oy.