Posted by Dan at 01th January 2013

A Beautiful Email Scam

Someone tried to scam me today for money via email.

It nearly got me…

This morning I received an email from an old business acquaintance called Charles Llewelyn, who is a super smart older gentleman who has been around the business block several times, made a fortune and now helps others do the same as a business coach and mentor.

It read:

Email from Charles

Sounds like Charles. He needs help.

No problem and happy to do so… but an unusual request from him.

Right email address (I checked), and the only thing that tweaked my ear was the grammar.

e.g. ‘I just had’ which knowing Charles would have read ‘I’ve just had’ (as well as other bits and pieces) so I figured bogus, BUT kept my mind open.

I replied:

My reply

Notice the response email has changed from gmail from ymail.

(Yes I did check originally and it WAS from Gmail. Google is normally pretty great at filtering Spoof Headers)

 

I traced the IP of the email to see if genuinely from Cyprus:

IP Trace

No. Mmm. Protected. It picked up me being in South Africa, but not the senders locale.

Ha. Ok, so now I’m intrigued. And strung it along to see what they wanted and if I could wheedle them out of the woods.

I received this response:

Response

Now the spelling and grammar is obviously SO not Charles to me. I now know this is probably BS, BUT it’s still not totally unbelievable.

I’m starting to love these scammers, I almost want to give them the money just for the effort.

I reply and ask what number he’s on, saying that I’ll call him re the details of the transfer.

I received this:

Another Response

He/she’s not a complete idiot and I suggest that as he’s in a ‘cyber cafe’ he/she can log into Skype and message or call me.

That’s where the trail goes cold. No response, bar the real Charles whom I’ve called and emailed asking if he’s ok, who responds to tell me he’s been hacked.

Lessons:

Keep changing passwords people. Make them complex, protect your personal contacts and keep your wits about you!

… If it sounds unreal, it probably is.

2 Comments

  1. Dan, have had similar, from an Uncle. Also eminating from Cyprus – spotted hack early as I knew uncle was not abroad; they would also never let him in to Cyprus. Ha ha, better effort than some chap in Nigeria offering to put millions in my little old bank account!

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