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General Category => Technical Talk => Topic started by: Curelom on February 04, 2018, 09:23:23 pm

Title: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Curelom on February 04, 2018, 09:23:23 pm
Just got a message in my spam/scam box titled Re: Partnership. Writer claims to be a “Military Soldier with the United Nations troop on war against terrorism,” asking for any respondents to go in with him on a claim for $8.5 million.

I didn’t open it, but was able to read it by right-clicking on the title in my mailbox & choosing “View Message Source.”

Here it is verbatim, except with the name redacted to protect any innocent person who might have the same name.

Hello. My Name J*** A****** G*****, i am a Military Soldier with the United Nations troop on war against terrorism here in Syria. I seek your partnership in the claim of $8, 500,000.00 US Dollars (Eight Million Five Hundred Thousand United State Dollars) I will give you more information upon your response to this proposal. Kindly respond via my private email address; g**** Best Regards, Captain. J*** A****** G*****

If he is a “Military Soldier” or a captain in an actual military force assigned to peacekeeping in Syria, he doesn’t say which one or what country. His English language usage suggests English may not be his first language. He does not say what the claim is for or whom it is against. If it’s legitimate, he doesn’t need co-litigants. The e-mail address given includes the supposed sender’s last name, but with a letter (an important consonant) missing. If 78097 is supposed to be a ZIP Code, it is for Folsom, Louisiana, a village north of Lake Pontchartrain with a population just over 700 and the closest high school 12 miles away. If it has a military installation of any kind, it must be top secret.

So there it is, FWIW. If this claim is legit & he has a righteous claim against anyone, I think he needs a lawyer more than he needs me or anyone else on the list of strangers he is sending this message to. And if it isn’t, I hope innocent folks don’t even open it, & maybe get scammed or expose themselves to identity theft or other problems.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: AndrewR on February 05, 2018, 05:34:20 am

It looks, feels, tastes and sounds like one too. Leave well alone.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: palmetto_gal on February 05, 2018, 08:09:55 pm
Aside from what has already been mentioned, a real member of the US Military would not sign anything with rank and name.  It's supposed to be John Doe, Capt., USAF or whatever branch he claims to be.  Red flags everywhere.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Curelom on February 12, 2018, 11:00:20 pm
Wow, got another one, saying
Hi, I am Sgt. F**** P****, a USA military deployed to Afghanistan. While on patrol we discovered some funds which I want to move out quickly for safe keep and investment. Reply for details.

Again, as palmetto_gal noted, wrong form of address for a military person, a “USA military” anyway. Wouldn’t we see CAPT, SGT, SSG, etc.? What English-speaking person calls him/herself “a USA military”? And they want to move out this supposed found money, which they are hanging onto at the risk of being court-martialed, for "safe keep." Some crook is exploiting people’s sympathy for military personnel or veterans, & the "funds" they want to "discover" are in your bank account. :(
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Jason on February 13, 2018, 11:24:25 pm
Why do scammers use such poor word choice. The words just do not fit together as having come from a native English speaker.

"Kindly", "funds", "safe keep", "I am a military soldier", "troop on war against terrorism", "I seek your partnership", "in the claim of", "$8,500,000 US Dollars", "upon your response". These are all just wrong word choices.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Curelom on February 14, 2018, 03:48:46 am
They don't write like native English speakers because they aren't. Huge numbers of these swindles originate in other countries, & they are using an on-line translation service or maybe a school language textbook to translate into what they hope sounds like good English. I wouldn't be able to pull off a credible scam in French or Russian any better than these crooks can in English.

To me, the stilted or awkward English language usage is often the first glaring hint of a scam.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: AndrewR on February 14, 2018, 10:11:36 am

I think you probably could do it. I used Google translate for this and I can't find anything in the French that looks suspect.

Bonjour, je m'appelle Fredy Mercury et je suis un officier servant dans l'armée française en Afghanistan.
J'ai en ma possession une grande quantité d'euros que j'espère pouvoir transmettre à quelqu'un en France.

I doubt they used a translator - I think they think their English is good.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Curelom on February 14, 2018, 12:30:55 pm
Indeed it is good English - good English as written by someone whose first language appears not to be U.S. English. The writer could be a non-English-speaking person, or might well be English-speaking but not from the U.S.

It looks good, uses correct words, & will fool some readers. But the vocabulary & diction are not typical vernacular American English, so it won't sound "right" to those who are accustomed to the vernacular.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Roper on February 15, 2018, 08:48:36 am
Huh. I never knew Freddy Mercury was in the French army.  ;)
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: AndrewR on February 15, 2018, 09:32:29 am
That's why this forum is so good. LDS mingled with great, unknown, facts.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: GoodyScrivener on February 15, 2018, 07:01:42 pm
Huh. I never knew Freddy Mercury was in the French army.  ;)

Freddy  was. But not Freddie.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Jacaré on February 15, 2018, 10:57:32 pm
The first time I ever got one of those it began by saying something like, "I know you are a well respected and reputable person in your country." Right there I knew they had the wrong guy.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Curelom on February 17, 2018, 03:40:56 am
Hi, Jacaré - it's nice to see you here!
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Curelom on February 27, 2018, 04:50:48 pm
Sheesh, got another one. Why am I getting all these spam appeals? :( I am not opening the e-mais, but right-clicking & selecting “Review Message Source,” which sometimes lets you read some of the content. Another one with grammar & diction suggesting the writer is not a native English speaker/writer & is translating into what he/she believes to be proper formal English.

This predator thinks people are dumb enough to send their phone & fax numbers - unfortunately, some are.

My name is Dr M***** L****, the Manager of Fund Investment Ltd London office. My client, who died recently in the eastern city of Benghazi insurgency, made a fixed deposit of GBP =C2=A328,300,000.00 Twenty Eight million, Three Hundred Thousand British Pounds in my branch. From investigations, he did not declare any next of kin, so I need you as a foreigner to act as the next of kin to get this fund for us because the funds will revert to the UK Treasury if nobody comes forward. My anticipated percentages for sharing shall be fair enough 55% for me, 45% for you. Please, be inform that we shall commence processing of claims of payment once I receive your interest from you, and the funds will get into your account within Five (5) working days by Telegraphic Transfer (T.T).20 Note that this transaction is 100% risk free as long as I am involve. Do acknowledge the receipt of this letter by indicating your interest in : transaction with your direct contact details such as your telephone and fax numbers for easy communication. Yours truly  Dr. M***** L****
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Jacaré on March 02, 2018, 12:18:17 am
Did you hear about the Nigerian prince who was found to be hiding $17,000,000 in his basement? He'd been trying to give it away for years, but no one would answer his emails.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Iggy on March 02, 2018, 03:58:40 am
Curelom, when you get these do you Add sender to blocked senders list? If you do this to all the unwanted emails, eventually you will filter them out. I now get maybe two a month. I use Office Outlook for my email program. If you are using this program, click on the offensive email, go to the top of the page, click on Actions, put your cursor on Junk Mail, and a menu will appear on the side, click on Add Sender To Blocked Senders List, then click on OK.

About the only thing I am now hit with is gobbly gook emails from amazon-uk-(blank blank). Send them to email prison too. It has now been three weeks since the last one.

Once a week I empty the Junk folder. I don't wait for it to delete the oldest after 30 days. Same with Trash.

With Outlook and my gmail account, blocked emails are bounced back to the originator so it appears like a bad email account. Came principle as telemarketer phone calls. If they reach an answering machine or fax the computerized dial-er will reject the number and that ends the calls.

Lately I have been bombarded with calls from a *Drug Company* telemarketer. Three to four times a day. When I finally answered I told the young man to remove me from their calling list and never call me again. A week went by with no calls, then starting on Monday at 8 AM it started again, but with a different young man. Today, hubby and I were up at 7 AM to get ready for his dental surgery 65 miles away. I had my printer on to print out the directions when the land line rang. Well, it is also our fax line. When I saw it was from Ontario OR, I let the call go through the fax.

The caller ID said the number was 541-XXX-0131, but the fax said the number was 541-XXX-0127. So, I am leaving the printer on over night. Let the little darling call again at 7AM and get my screeching fax.
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Patty Rain on March 16, 2018, 12:07:13 pm
Have you seen the James Veitch Ted Talk videos about scam email? I love them: (
Title: Re: Smells Like Scam
Post by: Curelom on September 30, 2019, 01:45:35 am
We’ve all gotten scam e-mails from people claiming to be a U.S. Army colonel, a Nigerian banker, a distant illegitimate cousin of the Queen of England, etc. with some windfall that they need our help liquidating in return for a cut of the proceeds, & always in poor English that clearly points to a non-English writer translating word for word from a school textbook or using an on-line translator.

I just got a real prize. Not to worry, I didn’t open it. I previewed it by right-clicking on the message title & choosing “View Message Source,” which opens all the internet protocol gibberish & the text without having to open the e-mail itself or click on a link.

After editing out all the gibberish, this is what it says, verbatim except with paragraphs to make it easier to read:

Good day to you. I am Steven T. Mnuchin, The Secretary of the United States National Treasury. Here is a little about my self and also the reason why I have decided to contact you. I am an American politician and hedge fund manager who is the 77th and current United States Secretary of the Treasury in  Donald Trump Administrations, and I am member of the Republican Party.

Formerly i work with Goldman Sachs, But in 2002, i left Goldman and worked briefly for Yale roommate Edward Lampert, Chief executive of Sears. I also briefly work for Soros Fund Management. On February, 2017, I was nominated as the replacement for the retiring Treasury Secretary Jacob Joseph " Jack" Lew, to serve in President Donald Trump Administration. Kindly visit the website below to view my personal profile.


United Nations have given me due Instructions, alongside with the World Bank to wire a sum of $10million US Dollars Only into your Bank Account in a legal way, That is why I have contacted you and to let you know that the United States Department of Justice, in The Person of the Attorney General will get some documents for you so that this transaction can be completed without delay.

Below is the Required Documents:1: United Nations/U.S fund approval Certificate2: World Bank deposit Certificate3: Proof of Ownership Certificate from U.S Government. These three(3) documents are needed before I can proceed with the transfer into your bank account: in the meantime; I want you to Re-Confirm the following details to me for your Case File Processing.

Legal First and Last Name:
Complete Residential Address
Direct Telephone No Fax
Legal Occupation and Position Address of Occupation

Please get back to me as soon as possible via my Personal Email:[which is not included]

Thanks and God Bless you.

Mr. Steven T. Mnuchin.
Executive Secretary United States Treasury Department
Main Treasury1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C. 20220.

 ;D ::) >:(

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