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Rogues Gallery

of suspicious e-mails

This page lists a variety of typical online bogus e-mails, and their fraudulent behaviour.

Don't open an e-mail attachment that has a hidden extension! See anti-virus measures. Here are a few suspicious e-mails which are typical of the sort of thing to look out for: (There are now even more on ROGUES GALLERY PAGE 2)

Snow White and the Seven Dwarves:

The consistently bad spelling, presumably designed to fool you into thinking it's being written by one person just for you, fails to distract from the fact that the attachment is a .exe which if you ran it could do ANYTHING to your computer. The text is always the same but the file varies and is sometimes a .scr which again is executable. If you run things like this, you will sooner or later be wiped-out! I have never run this file, but I can surmise that it is a VIRUS!

<attachment: dwarf4you.exe>

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Wednesday, October 24, 2001 2:23 PM
Subject: Snowhite and the Seven Dwarfs - The REAL story!

Today, Snowhite was turning 18. The 7 Dwarfs always where very educated and
polite with Snowhite. When they go out work at mornign, they promissed a
*huge* surprise. Snowhite was anxious. Suddlently, the door open, and the Seven
Dwarfs enter...

Ask Your Advice?:

Don't let the "How are you?" friendly style fool you! The dead giveaway is the attachment.xls.pif (which you will immediately spot if you have followed the advice in the anti-virus measures page!) - almost any double extension has to be considered suspicious! If you run this one, your machine will e-mail your friends and send them messages which will look like they have come from YOU! Note that "John Smith" (name changed for demonstration purposes here) is innocent and is not deliberately sending viruses, but is also a victim of a self-replicating virus.

The attachment is sometimes: credit application.doc.com . This is designed to fool you into thinking it's a .doc file, when in fact it's a .com , (not a domain name - it's an old MSDOS-style command file executable). Also see the emails for credit card refunds from hotels. You've never stayed at the hotel, and they don't know your credit card number, but if you open the attachment, something bad can happen.

If you receive a message like this you should not blame the person, but instead alert them, preferably by phone. If you send an e-mail make sure you get confirmation that it has been received.

<attachment: Schedule Q.xls.pif>

John Smith
Sent: Friday, September 21, 2001 11:45 AM
Subject: Schedule Q

Hi! How are you?

I send you this file in order to have your advice

See you later. Thanks


On the individualised:

This looks like something educational, perhaps something important to need to send somewhere, and you might be tempted to run the attachment. DON'T! It's almost certainly a virus, as per the previous example. Instead, contact Sue Jones (again the name has been altered to maintain anonymity), and make sure they know they have been hit by a virus! This could be you! If you get a virus, it could be YOUR name appearing as the sender for virus e-mails!

<attachment: OEMRNCE.EXE >

----- Original Message -----
Sue Jones
Sent: Saturday, August 18, 2001 12:58 PM
Subject: on the individualised

Introduced in 1994-95.This is the first statistical first release to include numbers of students on further education provision in higher education institutions. The data for higher education institutions are based on individualised student records returned to the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA). Returns from 430 colleges, 256 external institutions and 57 higher education institutions contributed to this statistical first release.

The "Nigeria Scam*" / "419 Scam":

This isn't a computer virus, it's a SCAM. You are being offered a cut of some ill-gotten gain. You have to pay a few hundred dollars to be IN on the deal, and then you get a few million when the deal works out. Except you don't! It's a very old scam, and used to exist as a postal offer. It's quite cleverly done, as some of the historical details in the message can be verified to be true. However, there is of course no huge booty to be had, and the only money changing hands is that of the gullible people paying the people running the scam. By the way, the phone/fax numbers and e-mail links have been removed from these specimens, but the names have been left in as they are merely pseudonyms of the people trying to tempt you into the scam. Official advice on this is: Don't reply, but tell the police!

Learn more about Nigeria Scams at The 419 Coalition , www.419eater.com , Freeman Institute, and this page at AllAfrica.com: http://allafrica.com/419_scam.html (note:AllAfrica.com has a policy of allowing anyone to publish, so don't assume that Nigeria Scam articles on there have any credibility just because they're on AllAfrica.com!)

There's an excellent reply by Outblaze when a Nigeria Scam was reported. See THIS

Also see a page like this by the FBI: http://www.fbi.gov/contact/fo/phnx/pxfraud.htm#Nigerian%20Letter (Page temporarily down. Please let me know when it's back, or if there's a replacement page) Update: There's a new page. Well Done to the FBI for this!: http://www.fbi.gov/majcases/fraud/fraudschemes.htm. However, beware of random spam e-mail messages pretending to be FROM the FBI! They are not from the FBI, they are from scamsters impersonating the FBI! For example, look at this: FBI HOAX. Clearly a pernicious scam, and definitely not from ROBERT MUELLER III.

A must-see resource for this is: Scamorama - Specialists at making fun of the Nigeria Scam! Also, the detailed anatomy of the Nigeria Scam is explained at www.makemoneyfastworld.com/content/view/29/38/, where the key features are discussed and analysed. Plus, there are a lot of interesting anti-fraud things going on at Anti-fraud International

There is an excellent educational resource at Rip and Scam where scam-busting is the speciality. Well worth a look around.

* "Nigeria" Scam? Not exclusive to Nigeria

Here are three very similar examples of this type of thing:
(scroll round this way to see them all) >>>>


Dear Sir/Madam,
Through the courtesy of business opportunity and after
a discreet but thorough inquiry at the Foreign Office
of the Nigeria Chambers of Commerce, I write you this
letter of request for partnership which I hope you
will give your urgent attention.

I am Mr Thompson Abaka, an Assistant Superintendent of
Custom (ASCI) of the Customs and Excise Department of
the Federal Ministry of Internal Affairs stationed at
the Alhaji Aminu Kano International Airport,Kano by,
Gen. Sanni Abacha of blessed memory.

You must be aware of the untimely death of my boss
Gen. Sanni Abacha,former Head of State and Commander-
in - Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic
of Nigeria for a period of 5 years. You may also have
read of his enormous wealth in the London times
magazine of July 1998. The publication confirmed that
he is worth about Two Billion British Pounds Sterling.

Sometimes ago, some of his aides and members of his
immediate family were arrested and stopped while
trying to escape from Nigeria in a chattered jet to
Saudi Arabia with twelve (12) trunk boxes marked
"Diplomatic Baggage" containing foreign currencies
worth well over (Ninety Four Million United States

While acting on a tip - off, my officials carried out
a crack down raid on them as they were preparing to
board the aircraft. Although I was fully aware of
their frantic effort to escape with the trunk boxes
containing the money, I had to do what I did since I
am a custom officer.

I declared only seven (7) of the boxes to the Federal
Government and right now, I am in possession of five
(5) of the remaining trunk boxes containing Twenty One
Million Five Hundred Thousand United States
Dollars(US$21,500,000.00), which had been disguised to
prevent their being discovered during transportation
to Saudi Arabia.

Consequently,I am forwarding this letter to you in
order to solicit your assistance to safely and
securely move the money in the trunk boxes to a safe
country and share the contents with you.

My colleagues and I have agreed that if you or your
company can assist us to move these trunk boxes
overseas, you or your company will retain 30% of the
total amount while 60% will be for us and the
remaining 10% will be used to offset any
bill/expenses) incurred by both sides.

Let me assure you that this transaction will be
concluded within one week of your signifying interest.

It is also 100% risk free for you because your
involvement in this deal will be strictly by cash and
outside Nigeria when we meet.

Please treat this matter with utmost confidentiality.
if you are interested, you should quickly respond to
my above fax numbers or my Fax No:000-0-0000000,
but if you are not interested,please keep my
confidence and disregard this message.

I hope this is an opportunity that should merit your
most serious consideration.

I am awaiting your reply anxiously.

Yours faithfully,

Mr Thompson Abaka.

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----- Original Message -----
From: thomas@xxxxxxxxx.com
To: thomas@xxxxxxxxx.com
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2001 1:29 AM

From:Dr.Bode Thomas
Nigerian National Pet Corp.
P.M.B 1122



I know this email will reach you as a surprise, but
need not to worry as we are using the only secured and
confidential medium available to seek for foreign
assistance/partnership in a business transaction which is
of mutual benefit.
I am a member of the Federal Government of Nigeria
Contract Award and Monitoring Committee in the Nigeria
National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Sometime ago, a
contract was awarded to a foreign firm in NNPC by my
Committee. This contract was over invoiced to the tune
of US$21.5M. U. S.Dollars. This was done deliberately. The
over-invoicing was a deal by my committee to benefit from
the project. We now want to transfer this money which is
in a suspense Account with NNPC into any Overseas Account
which we expect you to provide for us.
For providing the account where we shall remit the
money into, you will be entitled to 30% of the money,60%
will be for me andmy partners while 10% has been mapped
out from the total sum to cover any expenses that may be
incurred by us during the course of this transfer,both
locally and international expenses. It may interest you to
know that a similar
transaction was carried out with one MR. PATRICE MILLER,
President of Crane International Trading Corp. of 153 East
57th St., 28th floor, NY10022, TEL:
(212)-xxx-xxxx AND TELEX: xxxxxxx. The deal was
concluded and all covering documents were forwarded to MR.
MILLER to authenticate the claim. Once the
funds were transferred, MR. MILLER presented his Bank
with all the legal documents and remitted the whole funds
to another Bank Account and
disappeared completely. My colleagues were shattered, as
such opportunities do not come all the time.
I would require the following: -
1.Your company's name,address,telephone and fax
2.Your bank name,address,account and routing numbers
The above information would be use to make formal
applications as a matter of procedure for the release of
the money and onward transfer to your account.
It does not matter whether or not your company does
contract projects of this nature described here. The
assumption is that your company won the
major contract and subcontracted it out to other
companies. More often than not, big trading companies or
firms of unrelated fields win major contracts
and subcontracts to more specialized firms for execution
of such contracts.
We have strong reliable connections and contacts at
the Central Bank of Nigeria, as well as the Federal
Ministry of Finance and we have no doubt that all the
money will be released and transferred if we get the
necessary foreign partner to assist us in this deal.
Therefore,when the business is successfully concluded we
shall through our same connections withdraw all documents
used from all the concerned Government Ministries for 100%
We are ordinary Government workers and we will not want to
miss this once in a lifetime opportunity to get rich. We
want this money to be transferred to the overseas Accounts
for us, before the present Democratic Government start
Auditing all Federal Government owned Parastatals.
Please contact me immediately through my email address
whether or not you are interested in this deal. If you are
not, it will enable me scout for another foreign partner
to carry out this deal. Butwhere you are interested, send
the required documents aforementioned herein through my
confidential email addresses (thomas800@xxxxxxxx.com)
(thomas100@xxxxxxx.com)as time is of the essence in this
I wait in anticipation of your fullest co-operation.

Yours faithfully,

Dr.Bode Thomas



----- Original Message -----
Idris Umar Yahoo.com
To: xxxxxxxxx
Sent: Tuesday, November 13, 2001 7:02 PM

To:-The Director/C.E.O

From:-Dr.Idris A.Umar


This E-Mail would probably be a pleasant surprise
since it is unsolicited.I had the privilege of been
furnished with your e-mail address via the auspices
of our NEXIM bank upon an enquiry,though the mission
was not disclosed to the bank officials for obvious
and security reasons.My name is Dr.Idris A.Umar an
Executive Director with the Nigerian Liquified Natural
Gas Company{N.L.N.G.C} in Nigeria-West Africa.

My partners and I are seeking your co-operation and
understanding in obliging us the services of your bank
account;where we intend to transfer the sum of
THOUSAND U.S.DOLLARS}.This sum is the result of a
deliberate policy of over-invoicing of major
contracts by this office done for our
company-N.L.N.G.C between 1997-1999 by a consortium of
foreign frims.Since it is unethical for civil
servants{government officials} to maintain foreign
accounts while still in service, hence I was
unanimously mandated by my partners to establish
formal contacts with you for possible assistance.

If you are interested in this investment proposal and
quite capable to help us manage and invest this money
probably in your company,I would require that you
reach me as a matter of top priority on my e-mail
address {BOX} above.I also humbly request that you
reach me on my fax number too ++000-0-000-0000,in your
reply kindly indicate your bank co-ordinates,your full
name{s},telephone,fax and private e-mail address.You
will be handsomely compensated by having to yourself
30% of the total sum while my partners and I will go
home with the remainder of 70%.I wish to state here
that your company's nature of business is completely
irrelevant ,and upon the commencement of this
transaction it will be successfully concluded within
2-3 weeks all things being equal.

Upon receipt of your positive response, I will forward
more details of this transaction to you for a clearer
understanding,but suffice to say that this business
requires maturity,honesty and above all absolute
CONFIDENTIALITY at all times and these should not be
compromised.Also,you stand at no risk if you elect to
partake in this enterprise,but remember the cliché is
don't discuss,don't disclose to third party
irrespective of the nearness/closeness.

I implore you to take every statement here
seriously,kindly read this e-mail over and over again
for a proper understanding and feel absolutely free to
contact me on my e-mail address and most importantly
by fax also.Remember the taste of the pudding is in
the eating,give us an opportunity to proof that this
transaction is viable and highly profitable .I am
waiting with bated breath for your quick and positive
response,whilst thanking your understanding.

Warmest regards.


PS:-Due to hacking on the internet, I may be prompted
to close this email address immediately I notice that
the confidential nature of this transaction is HIGHLY
compromised. It is therefore imperative that you reply
me by fax and also send an e-mail, to be sure the
message is well acknowledged by my goodselves. My fax
number is++234-0-000-0000 please take note

Do You Yahoo!?
Find the one for you at Yahoo! Personals

There is something which looks similar in a way, but where the sender is offering to buy something expensive from you by cheque. This is explained in the page about the Cheque Scam. Another scam worth being aware of is the Triangulation Scam where you pay for goods and they arrive, but it later turns out that the goods were paid for using a stolen credit card!

Also, if you receive a message which appears to be from Microsoft, take a second look! There is a type of message which impersonates Microsoft and warns you about Microsoft vulnerabilities and asks you to run an attachment. Don't! Read More about this>

Also, if you get a message offering you a free Worm Klez E immunity tool, Read THIS first!

A similar worrying situation can be seen in the Yahoo Games Screensaver message

Plus, what about the ATM Cash Machine Scam? Is it real? Make your own mind up HERE

And don't allow ActiveX in e-mail (again another way viruses try to get into your machine)

Active Scripting can be a problem too! See TERRAKT IN AUSTRALIA - another suspicious e-mail! Similarly, AOL warning which is also a type of panicmail

Also, if you were getting a mortgage, would you get it from mortgage spam? Surely not?!

There are also some examples of viruses to view safely in the virus museum!

Beware of "Mail Returned" messages! Some are genuine, for example if you've sent to a nonexistent e-mail address, but viruses can impersonate such messages! See Mail Returned virus messages

And what about YOU being accused of sending SPAM?! What's all this about ADVERTIGER? See The john@advertiger.com message

An e-mail arrives alleging you have made a video and put it online and you'll be in trouble. That's PANICMAIL

Dating websites can be fun, but you should be careful to avoid being scammed by con artists. Fortunately you can save your save yourself from scammers by being aware what kinds of ploys those rascals get up to. See Online Dating Scams

Also see: Crime-fighting links and anti-virus measures

Also, if an incoming message is long and looks like getting you emotionally involved in some long story, quickly flick through it first, it might be a Chain Letter! Never forward-on any message containing a threat or insult or emotional blackmail, even if it pretends to be on the side of good and makes out you are bad for not sending it on. This type of thing is known as a CHAIN LETTER. There's a lot more to this, and it's important you are forewarned! See the CHAIN LETTERS page

Get Rich Quick schemes aren't all bad. Indeed sooner or later someone may come up with something that works! Meanwhile, there is a particular type you should be aware of, and that's Pyramid Schemes. You know, you get $5 and you send it to someone on a list and... etc

Also, it's worth using some commonsense when considering such offers as GET A UNIVERSITY DEGREE! MAKE MORE MONEY! NO ABILITY REQUIRED! etc. See Qualifications on Qualifications

Message from Vodafone offering you £50 if you register with the Vodafone E-Topup system. Can that be real? Not if it's anything like THIS Vodafone E-Topup Hoax Message

Then there's Congratulations You've Won the LOTTERY! - well you haven't won it by receiving a spam e-mail message!

How about a virtual Greetings card? Is it really from your friend or is it a hoax/scam? You can tell if you know what to look for and what to do. See Virtual Greeting Cards to Beware of

What if you receive an email from Kofi Annan offering you $250,000 compensation for being a victim of the Nigeria Scam? Is that genuine? Take a look and find out how to tell!

Similarly, if you receive a message claiming to be from EFCC Nigeria it's important to realise these things often aren't what they claim to be!

If you receive a message which says that the BBB Better Business Bureau have a complaint against your dealership with a customer, try not to panic as the BBB Complaint message is a hoax.

If you receive an email that says you are guilty of driving at over 55 MPH in New York even though you probably have never been there, it could be the Uniform Traffic Ticket viral attack. Don't open the attachment.

If you receive an e-mail saying Unlock Your Student Finance Account Now, please bear in mind it is not because your profile has been locked. You're probably not in the UK anyway.

Another helpful link is Get Safe Online.org

If you receive a card or voicemail saying you've got a parcel to be collected and there's a phone number, you should make sure it's a basic phone number and not an expensive premium rate number, because if it is, then it could be a SCAM! See Parcel Delivery Service

Security Server Update from your bank? Or from PayPal telling you your account is going to expire? No! It's a scam! See Bank Security Update Scam. Also see eBay Spam Hoax and the O2 online billing hoax email, and now also the Amazon security verification of identity scam message.

And if you have any comments on any of this, or if you have anything to add, please e-mail with a subject line of "Rogues Gallery" so we know you are talking about the Rogues Gallery of suspicious e-mails rather than the Shopping Portal, for example! (this site has thousands of pages).

Continued! There are even more of these dodgy e-mails at the ROGUES GALLERY PAGE 2