Sunday, May 16, 2004

Who Wants to Make a Few Million Dollars

of illegally obtained funds?

I just got one of those email letters telling me of the said state of the sender, whose father/brother/partner's ill-gotten gains are going to be confiscated by the evil government if I don't help him transfer money from his country to my bank account -- and oh, could you please send me a few thousand dollars to help along the process.

If you haven't gotten one of these yet, you will. This was the first one I got on my account (non-cousin Nathan's email server thoughtfully marked it as spam), but I have an older-than-spam email account, and it gets these daily. If you don't know the style of the letter, or are tempted to take some of the money that has been sitting in the account of a deceased oil executive since 1980, go to the Nigeria 419 Coalition Website and read up on it.

Then (if you're in the US, and if you haven't sent in any money), send the email to the U.S. Secret Service at They won't stop this spam from entering your mailbox, but they will keep the letter on file as they build their database on the scammers.

If you have sent money to these people, check out the second paragraph of the Secret Service site mentioned above.