For kicks, I’ve decided to dive into the junk folders of my email accounts once a week, plucking out my favourite, ridiculous spam mail for posterity.
I’ve seen variations of this phishing spam before, but it’s one of my favourites, mainly because of some choice quotes. Let’s take a look, shall we?
MY DEAR FRIEND
From: J.T. <firstname.lastname@example.org>
My Dear Friend,
Good day and compliments, I know this letter will definitely come to you as a huge surprise, but I implore you to take the time to go through it carefully as the decision you make will go off a long way to determine my future and continued existence.
Please allow me to introduce myself. I am Sgt. John Travis, a US Marine Sgt. Serving in the 3rd Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment that Patrols the Anbar province, Iraq. I am desperately in need of assistance and I have summoned up courage to contact you. I am presently in Iraq one out of the 50 thousand remaning soldiers for training of Iraq forces untill end of this year. I found your contact particulars in an address journal hence i contact you.
I am seeking your assistance to evacuate the sum of Nine Million US Dollars ($9 Million USD) to the States or any safe country, as far as I can be assured that it will be safe in your care until I complete my service here.
This is no stolen money and there are no dangers involved.
SOURCE OF MONEY:
Some money in various currencies was discovered and concealed in barrels with piles of weapons and ammunition at a location near one of Saddam Hussein’s old Presidential Palaces during a rescue operation and it was agreed by all party present that the money be shared amongst us.
Click this link http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/2988455.stm
This might appear as an illegal thing to do but I tell you what?
No compensation can make up for the risks we have taken with our lives in this hellhole. The above figure was given to me as my share and to conceal this kind of money became a problem for me, so with the help of a British contact working with the UN here (his office enjoys some immunity)
I was able to get the package out to a safe location entirely out of trouble spot. He does not know the real contents of the package as he believes that it belongs to an American who died in an air raid, who before giving up trusted me to hand over the package to his close relative. I have now found a secured way of getting the package out of Iraq for you to pick up. I do not know for how long I will remain here, as I have been lucky to survive 2 suicide bomb attacks by Pure Divine intervention.
This and other reasons put into consideration have prompted me to reach out for help. If it might be of interest to you then Endeavor to contact me and we would work out the necessary formalities but I pray that you are discreet about this mutually benefiting relationship. Reply via email: email@example.com
Sgt. John Travis
Oh my LOLZ! Where to begin? First off, check the @iraq.com on the header, as contrasted with the gmail account you are directed to contact at the end. Because, ya know, the website iraq.com belongs to the Marines, right?
Now, credit where credit is due, this email begins with fairly accurate grammar and spelling, and also utilizes facts so as to be believable. It names off the battalion, etc of this supposed Sargeant (how much you wanna bet that a John Travis did, indeed, go to Iraq and was perhaps killed?), and mentions the Anbar province. For someone without the faintest clue about spam and scams, this may come off sincere.
But then, the grammar slides. He found my email address in an address journal, “hence I contact you”? Alright, which of you punks went on vacation in Iraq and lost your phone book? *shakes head* He then tells us of finding magical money in Saddam’s palaces and that he’s asking a complete stranger to hide nine million bucks for him, without stealing it, until his service is done. Um… Yeah. I am also amused by the fake bbc link here. But then we hit my favourite part: “This might appear as an illegal thing to do but I tell you what? No compensation can make up for the risks we have taken with our lives in this hellhole.”
This spammer is guilt-tripping you into providing your information! Bwahahahaha. I love it! I also love the further guilting here: “I do not know for how long I will remain here, as I have been lucky to survive 2 suicide bomb attacks by Pure Divine intervention.”
They’ve gone to a hell of a lot of trouble to make this look sincere and personalized, and mostly well-written. But still… if you actually believe that a solider with a ton of cash would contact a stranger to smuggle it out and hold it, you deserve to be the victim of fraud. Why can’t he pay his way out of Iraq? Why is he contacting the British Embassy for help? Why wouldn’t the Embassy wonder why the US Embassy wouldn’t just send home a dead soldier’s things?
Oh, spam! You can be so creative. I love you.