Tag Archives: scams

Email Scams: Is anyone falling for this?

8 Feb

By: Carla M. Thompson

Have you ever received an email like this?



I am Miss Abena Fabien and I got your contact on my desperate search for a trusted partner who will help me in investing my late father money abroad.

My late father, Mr Paul Fabien was a gold dealer here in Ghana before his death and he left me with five million US dollars ( $5m) in his deposit account in a Bank here in the country. As the only child, my uncles are threatening to kill me if i don’t release the documents of money to them.

I contacted you so that you can be my foreign partner in investing this money in your country for me to settle down in your country and start my life there. I contacted you because the bank refused to allow me withdraw or deduct any money from the account until it is transfer to foreign beneficiary account due to what is stated in agreement letter the bank made with my late father when he deposited the money.

I also want to assure you that 30% 0f this money will be yours for every effort and expenses you will make to receive this money in your country and to help me in investing it there.

Waiting for your urgent reply.
Abena Fabien

I hope that no one has been a victim of this type of scam but just in case let’s answer this question.  How do you know if it is real?  Here’s how:

1.  The first sentence gives it away, if they are in search of someone they can trust why are they contacting you?  Do you know this person?  Would you email them if you needed help?

2. The next paragraph says that she is being threatened by her uncles.  The scam artist is trying to draw you in emotionally so that you will have sympathy for her.  This is all part of the con. Why not call the police?

3.  The next paragraph explains why she needs you, “I contacted you because the bank refused to allow me withdraw or deduct any money from the account until it is transfer to foreign beneficiary account“.  She wants you to give her your account number so that “the bank” can deposit the money into your account.  But in actuality they will take money from your account.  And if you think about it, why would anyone’s family member set up an account like this for their beneficiary?

4.  Then to close the deal she promises you 30% and wants to you to help her spend it when she gets here.  Sounds like a good deal right?  Wrong.  Too easy!

It is best just to delete these emails.

Rental and Real Estate Scams

12 Mar

From the FBI Investigative Programs Cyber Investigations  http://www.fbi.gov/cyberinvest/escams.htm

03/12/10—Individuals need to be cautious when posting rental properties and real estate on-line. The IC3 continues to receive numerous complaints from individuals who have fallen victim to scams involving rentals of apartments and houses, as well as postings of real estate online.
Rental scams occur when the victim has rental property advertised and is contacted by an interested party. Once the rental price is agreed-upon, the scammer forwards a check for the deposit on the rental property to the victim. The check is to cover housing expenses and is, either written in excess of the amount required, with the scammer asking for the remainder to be remitted back, or the check is written for the correct amount, but the scammer backs out of the rental agreement and asks for a refund. Since the banks do not usually place a hold on the funds, the victim has immediate access to them and believes the check has cleared. In the end, the check is found to be counterfeit and the victim is held responsible by the bank for all losses. 
Another type of scam involves real estate that is posted via classified advertisement websites. The scammer duplicates postings from legitimate real estate websites and reposts these ads, after altering them. Often, the scammers use the broker’s real name to create a fake e-mail, which gives the fraud more legitimacy. When the victim sends an e-mail through the classified advertisement website inquiring about the home, they receive a response from someone claiming to be the owner. The “owner” claims he and his wife are currently on missionary work in a foreign country. Therefore, he needs someone to rent their home while they are away. If the victim is interested in renting the home, they are asked to send money to the owner in the foreign country. 
If you have been a victim of Internet crime, please file a complaint at http://www.IC3.gov/.