If you are reading this article, you probably have an email address and have received any or all of the following types of email:
- Someone identifying himself as the heirs of a certain former president or government official in Africa and asking for your help to move a large amount of cash into the country. Needed are personal details to include your address and bank information to effect the transfer. You will receive a hefty percentage as a commission.
- An extremely busy businessman/company needing a procurement/finance officer. He receives large amounts of money from clients and need somebody to act as his paymaster. He wants you to receive the money in your bank account and disburse payments to his suppliers. You will supposedly receive a hefty percentage as a commission. Needed are personal details to include your address and bank information to effect the transfer.
- The UNICEF, UN or any huge organization needs your help in whatever form and needs your account details.
- You supposedly received money ($125~ 10,000) in either your Paypal, e-Gold or Moneybookers account. The page looks very much like the authentic Paypal, e-Gold or Moneybookers page with a corresponding link to your account login.
- Your bank, Paypal, e-Gold or Moneybookers account was a subject to hacking attempts and needs to be verified. You will need to login. The email looks very much like an authentic bank, Paypal, e-Gold or Moneybookers page with a corresponding link to your account login.
Here are my thoughts, in this regard:
- Any attempt to move money from a deceased's account is 99% illegal in any country.
- The first three types of emails or any variant of it are 100% scam. Those are nothing but an letters designed to make you give personal information to be compiled and sold to individuals or companies looking for lists where they can send promo emails.
- If you're unlucky enough, the senders may be professional scammers out to empty your bank account, blackmail you into sending them money or worse, sell your information to stalkers or thieves.
- The fourth and fifth types of email (and its variants) are designed to steal your login names and passwords. Your account will be emptied and worse, used in money laundering and fraudulent transactions.
- The first three types of email should automatically be deleted
- An easy way to verify the claims is through a check of the sender's email address. No company moving such amount of money will use yahoo, hotmail, gmail or any free email servers.
- When logging into your paypal, egold, moneybookers or bank accounts, do not do so by clicking into a link that you received via email. Close your browser and open a new one and type your bank or accounts web address (url). Personally, I even delete all my browser's cookies to delete any possible tracking device in my Temporary Internet Files before logging in.
In the Philippines, the Central Bank recently issued the following press release:
Warning to the public against e-mail scams
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas today warned the public against e-mail messages claiming the recipient is the beneficiary of $10 million and asks the recipient to disclose personal information.
Please beware as this comes from a syndicate using the name of our central bank and our governor to gain information that could be used possibly for fraudulent activities. We request you therefore to disregard this spurious message and to warn your family and friends against this scam.
For the record, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas is not in the business of safekeeping money or gold or other valuables for private individuals.
The BSP through the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) has solicited the help of several international agencies including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) of the United States to track down, stop, and possibly prosecute its perpetrators.
If you receive e-mail messages of this nature, please report this immediately to the BSP at Tel. No. 523-4832, fax no. 523-6210 or to the AMLC at 523-4421 or 536-7358.