The Spam Report: Day #140: "Dear Adam"
Before the last couple days, there were only a couple things I knew about the West African nation, the Ivory Coast. It used to be a French colony and thus, was called "Cote d'Ivoire," and also that former Chelsea Football Club striker Didier Drogba was from there.
I lived in that neighborhood many years ago when I worked for CBS News in London and so, even though I know little about football/soccer, I jumped on that bandwagon even though back then, in the early 1990's, the team stunk. They got a lot better over the last 15 or so years, due, in part, to the scoring ability of the aforementioned Drogba.
Anyhow, I don't know why the scammers are now somehow choosing that country as the place where they claim to be from. I've theorized in the past that the people who write these emails are sitting in a lawn chair, on a beach somewhere, sipping umbrella drinks and hoping to scam enough people to keep up their extravagant lifestyle.
In today's submission, we have a "dieing" woman who found my "good profile" through "God's direction." She/he would like me to help invest the $5 million left by her late husband to give some to her son, some to charity and then, I get 15% for my efforts. The key thing though is I have to correspond with her/him by email because her illness has taken her voice and her late husband's relatives are "worldly and greedy also wicked" and they want the money for themselves.
We've debunked this type of a claim many times before and our central thesis in debunking these holds true: Type out a summary of the spam email and if it sounds more implausible than any Hollywood film, just hit delete.
Now, I'm a bit of a glutton for punishment. So, I replied to Mrs. Natter. My message to her was simple. She should get Didier Drogba to help since he's from there and he's awesome.
We'll see if she responds.
Have a great weekend.
From: Mrs melissa Natter [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Thursday, May 08, 2014 10:10 AM
To: Adam Schrager
Subject: Dear Adam.
Good day,How is your family doing i will want to assure you that my contacting & trusting you in this transaction is not by accident but through God's direction after going through your good profile i decided to contact you, Since the death of my husband I decided to dedicate my life to God. When my late husband was Alive he deposited the sum of $5,000.000.00.(Five Million United States Dollars)
Due to my health condition my Doctor told me recently that I would not last for the next few months due to my cancer of lungs problem. Having known my condition I decided to donate this fund to an individual who will use this money to invest for my only Son & help orphanages and charity homes around the world in the way I am going to instruct herein. My late husband relatives who should have handled this situation for me are worldly and greedy also wicked. Since my illness, they have succeeded in stealing most of my late husband properties except this money that they do not know about.
I took this decision because of my little child Otmer that will inherit part of this money but he can not carry out this work alone because he is just a small boy of 16 years old, this is why I have contacted you as God directed me that you are a trust worthy person that will utilize 40% of this money for the future and up keeping of my Son & also invest a good investments for him, while 45% will be used to help those in need like orphanages and widows around the world but in my name Mrs. Melissa Natter, while 15% will be for you and your family for helping me in this regard.
I am presently hospitalized in Cote D'ivoire where I have been undergoing Cancer treatment, I have since lost my ability to talk I cannot receive telephone calls. I will like you to contact my Son immediately you received this message; his phone number is +22504783857 Please call him so he can hear your voice & know whom in person i am dealing with or you can send him an email.(firstname.lastname@example.org)
Please assure me that you will act accordingly as I directed and please Keep this contact confidential till such a time this funds get to your Custody, this is to ensure that nothing jeopardizes my last wish on Earth as i am dieing.
I await your urgent reply so i can furnish you with more vital information, i have attached my picture with my son.
Mrs. Melissa Natter.