Welcome, one and all, to another jolly jaunt through the world of e-mail scams and the fun that I have with them. Since my previous post, Talking to Ibrahim, was so well received, I figured that I may as well post another. What makes this one special is that it sort of relates to the previous one. You see, once Ibrahim stopped responding, I was contacted by Benin’s UN representative, no less! The purpose of the e-mail was to offer me compensation for my recent unfortunate run-in, and the high level of scamming that I suffered. The fact that the UN representative was using a yahoo e-mail address amused me greatly. Nevertheless, I decided to start this one pretty seriously and see how they reacted to some blunt questioning. If that didn’t scare them away, I planned to have some fun. So, let’s begin.
Saturday, February 10th, 2018
Dr. Favor Ahmed
CONTACT DHL OFFICE
Attention; This official to inform you that we have been having meetings with (BCEAO) for the past three (3) weeks which ended two days ago with Moon Jae-in the South Korea president with Patrice Talon President of Benin Republic and other seven continent presidents on the congress we treated on solution to scam victim problems. Note: reports we received from anti-fraud international monitoring group your name/email has been submitted to us you are one of the scam victim show on their system, the united nations have agreed to compensate you with the sum of ($1.5 Million USD) One million Five hundred thousand united state dollars, this compensation is also including international business that failed you in past due to government problems etc, Bank has been mandated by the IMF to Program your compensation into ATM Visa Card. This morning we confirmed that your ATM Visa Card has been programmed and deposited in DHL office available to deliver it to your home address, the DHL delivery charges have be paid by IMF, the only money you will send to DHL Office is $69 dollars for security keeping fees, you are advice to contact DHL office now through information’s bellow with your correct delivery information’s. Contact name: Mr.Chris Ibrahim Email:( email@example.com ) Tell: +229-6066-0019 Make sure you reconfirmed DHL Office your details ASAP as stated below to avoid wrong delivery and call them to confirm as your sending your informations. Your full name………. Home address:……… Your country……….. Your city………….. Telephone…… Occupation:……. Age:……………….. If you have a question’s Let us know, inform us as soon as possible you receive your ATM Card for proper verifications we shall guard you. Regards, Mrs. Favor mashela Ahmed U.N Coordinator.
A few questions:
1) Why not just take the handling fee off my ‘compensation’?
2) Why would I be awarded compensation in US dollars when I don’t live in the USA?
Mrs Favor Mashela Ahmed
Thanks for your question; please sir I will advice you to read the message very careful, for your information the compensations from Benin Republic not US, when you receive the card with instructions from bank, you will be receiving your local currency from the ATM Card, the total amount will be $1.5 Million USD, your ATM Matching will convert it to your local currency.
Do not be confused, contact the DHL Office as I instructed YOU all charges have be paid by IMF Except security keeping fee which they said the don’t know when you will contact them, the amount is $69 dollars by convert it in your currency that will be the money you will send to them as you contact the office, when you receive the card the instruction to use the card and address to contact bank attach with the card for releasing your pin code, you have to contact the DHL as soon possible you finish reading this message.
after receiving the card from DHL you contact the bank for them to give your pin code for security reasons, bank now will be waiting when you will contact them for your pin code, contact the DHL Office now with your information’s.
That was actually a longer response than I anticipated. I wasn’t really ready to throw the silly stuff yet though, and thought it would be worth making them think that I was going to be in touch with the real DHL, rather than their fake contact.
I have used the contract details on the DHL site rather than the email. I assume that will suffice?
Sunday, February 11th, 2018
Mrs Favor Mashela Ahmed
There are many branches DHL Office, you should follow my instructions that is why I’m here to guard, contact DHL office through E-mail as stated bellow for your delivery address as I already instructed you and to make sure you call them on phone for your urgent attention, the branch of DHL Office you will contact at bellow.
Contact name: Mr.Chris Ibrahim
Email:( firstname.lastname@example.org )
Make sure you reconfirmed DHL Office your details as stated below to avoid wrong delivery and call them to confirm as your sending your informations.
Your full name……….
let me know as soon as possible you contact DHL and forward your details to them.
happy sunday with you and your family.
Mrs. Favor mashela Ahmed
Now that I anticipated. I figured that they would be trying to push me into using their details rather than, you know, official sites and the suchlike. So, I prepared a response that made it abundantly clear that I was messing with them.
Dear Mrs Ahmed,
Well, that sounds reasonable, and not in the least bit scam-tastic. I have forwarded my details on to the e-mail provided. In case anything goes wrong, I’ve also copied them below for you.
Full Name: Mr Sam Pepys
Home Address: Apartment 69, Yermom Strip, NYC, 10001
City: New York
Telephone Number: Currently disconnected – the lack of a job makes it hard to maintain one …
Occupation: Currently also disconnected – the lack of a phone makes it difficult to arrange interviews … it’s a vicious cycle.
Catchphrase: “I’m in it for the LOLZ. And the money; that’s nice too.”
So, if you don’t mind me asking (actually, even if you mind me asking) … how did you learn of this fraud, anyway? And how is your job treating you? It must be pretty interesting.
Mrs Favor Mashela Ahmed
I received your message together your information’s and will also forwarded it to the DHL office, I don’t understand you clear are not happy to receive this compensation?
Last time you said your not living in USA now you provide USA address, please be honest with me for you not lost your package and again once you hear from DHL Office transfer them the $69 dollars as I already inform you in my previous message to enable them proceed.
Always keep me update.
Really? None of the above sounded fake to them? They just thought that I was unhappy? That’s fine. I decided to add some photoshop into the mix here.
Monday, February 12th, 2018
Thank you kindly for that. It is less that I am unhappy to receive compensation, and more that I am very wary of e-mail scams. Why, I was once caught out by a rather clever one that saw me lost several thousand euros from my account. Unfortunately, even someone as savvy as I can still be caught out by sophisticated ploys. I mean, how I was to know that the guy wasn’t really a Nigerian prince? It all seemed so above board.
You are correct in your statement regarding my location. As per above, I was being cautious. I feel however that there may have been a slight miscommunication as regards to my named contact in DHL, Mr Chris Ibrahim. You see, your message coincidentally arrived during my holiday in West Africa! As such, I decided to stop by the Benin DHL office and cut out the peskiest of middle men, postal times.
And this is where things get strange. You see, no one in the office had heard of Mr Ibrahim, and they certainly were not aware of any package for myself. Such was my shock that I asked a passer by to take a photo of me outside the office wearing an appropriate expression of confusion. Admittedly, the little scamp did try to steal my phone after snapping the shot, but the resulting foot chase was most exhilarating, so I chose not to press charges.
Regardless, I am here for a few more weeks yet. Perhaps you could check those details for me?
Mr S Pepys
P.S. I have attached the photo for clarity.
Mrs Favor Mashela Ahmed
DO NOT BE AFRAID ANY MORE
i received your message and also understand your point, that is why I keep writing you for security reasons in order to guard you not go wrong or to be deceive by any body, have you hear from the UPS Office since yesterday you contacted the office?
Yesterday I also forwarded your information’s to them, now I’m waiting to hear good news from you, expecting to hear from you that you have complete the requirement, if you never hear from UPS office I advice you to write them message again by giving them reminder, may be they are checking before file before respond to you, they said that you must contact them before the be your service which I already explain it to you in my first message.
Keep me update in order to guard you, your parcel is legal do not be afraid anymore,
I’m waiting to read from you.
Dear Mrs Ahmed,
This may seem a little nit-picky, and I certainly don’t want to appear rude, but please note that all official correspondence should be prefaced with a suitable opening. Were we friends chatting at a coffee shop, I would not expect an opening before every interaction, but given that we are conversing via e-mail, I would appreciate a Dear Mr Pepys at the start of each message. Thank you in advance for this courtesy.
I shall indeed keep you updated, and as per the e-mail subject, I WILL NOT BE AFRAID ANYMORE! I am afraid that I had to reread your more recent e-mail multiple times; something seemed amiss, but I was unsure what. Eventually, I figured out what it was. You mentioned UPS. You previously spoke of DHL but are now mentioning UPS. As soon as I saw this, I said, “That explains why DHL could neither find my package nor my contact!” Unfortunately, I said this quite loudly, and was subject to some rather odd looks from passers-by.
No matter though. After some searching, I was able to find the UPS Benin Office. Strangely though, I encountered the same problem here that I did with DHL. To illustrate this, I again took a confused photo outside the building (also attached). In case you were worried, the person taking the photo did not try to steal my phone this time. I told them beforehand that I would give chase if they did, and they didn’t seem like they wanted to go for a run this evening.
Still, misadventures aside, this still leaves me stumped. I must say that this is running the risk of ruining my holiday at this point. Perhaps, as you are Benin’s UN representative, we could meet up for a coffee and some fufu, and discuss this further? It is, after all, Strange to see how a good dinner and feasting reconciles everybody.
Mr Sam Pepys
Tuesday, February 13th, 2018
Mrs Favor Mashela Ahmed
you should ask me why is UPS? this exactly what makes you be deceived in past because of you think that you know more tern any other person.
as you got direct contact UPS have you search me my?
i will not advice you any more, let this be noted.
Whoops! I made her angry. I wasn’t about to leave it there though … so I made another photo.
Dear Mrs Ahmed,
I find your continued rudeness most unbecoming for a member of the UN. I am also alarmed by the rudimentary lack of structure in your recent correspondence. Nevertheless, I have attempted to address your points as best I can. For the record though, I have attached a photo of my initial reaction to your e-mail. I am afraid that with few people around, I had to resort to letting the hotel dog take it. While he did not attempt to steal my phone, he did put his paw over part of the camera lens. And then he stole my sausages. It’s OK though, as he was a cute little thing, and I had a Twix handy to satisfy me. Now, onto the e-mail.
First, you ask why I ask about UPS. Well, that should be quite obvious. As stated, you first mentioned DHL, then mentioned UPS. I had assumed that you simply made an error in your original e-mail. Am I to take it that this is not the case?
As to your comments on why I have been deceived in the past, I am afraid that I had to look up the word ‘tern’. The Google definition is as follows:
a seabird related to the gulls, typically smaller and more slender, with long pointed wings and a forked tail.
So, your sentence states that I was deceived as I believed that I knew more slender, gull-like birds than anyone else. I must say, I am no great ornithologist, so how you came to this conclusion is, frankly, beyond me. Perhaps you could clarify?
Now the phrase ‘have you search my me my’ is unusual. I can only assume that you were flustered by my invite for coffee – which I will address shortly – and panicked. Yes, I did indeed search your name with them as well as the named contact that you gave me, but to no avail. The staff seemed quite concerned that you were a UN representative but had a yahoo e-mail address rather than a UN one too, but I am sure that I can sort that when I visit the US Embassy in Benin tomorrow. They will no doubt make contact with you and clear this whole mess up.
You also state that you will not advise me any further. Well, I am rather bamboozled by this, as you have not really advised me at all yet. You’ve given me orders, all of which led to dead ends, but not really offered advice. If you would like to start however, I do have some issues with an ingrowing toenail that you may be able to help with.
So, as stated above, I wish to address my coffee invite. It is quite natural for you to become embarrassed by this. In fact, I found that both boys and girls gave me much the same reaction in high school, though this was more to do with my cockroach collection than anything. Please be aware though that I was not inviting you out for a date, I was merely seeking your assistance in resolving this matter. I hope this provides clarity, and please note that the offer is still open.
And there we go, I think that that answers everything. I hope that we can continue converse in a civil manner going forward.
Mr S Pepys
Sadly, I did not receive another response after that. The main thing though was that I kept them going for a few days and had great doing it. So, how did you all find this one?