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Nigerian letter-like on LinkedIn

November 14, 2013 6 comments

Read this quick E-Crime Expert Blog Post to see how now LinkedIn is used for the “Nigerian Letter” classic scam.

This scam is also known as 419 scam, because the number “419” refers to the article of the Nigerian Criminal Code dealing with fraud.

Yesterday, I responded to an invitation to connect with someone on LinkedIn, who appeared to be a Lawyer (and later a liar:).

Screen shot 2013-11-14 at 19.59.09

Even more, my “new connection” and I appeared to have in common 14 shared connection (this made it even more credible).

Screen shot 2013-11-14 at 19.59.28

Today, I’ve received a LinkedIn message from that “new connection”, message that seems to be the old, classic, Nigerian-letter scam.

Screen shot 2013-11-14 at 19.56.57

How it woks:

This scam usually begins with a letter or email purportedly sent to a selected recipient but actually sent to many, making an offer that would result in a large payoff for the victim. The email’s subject line often says something like “From the desk of barrister [X]”, “Your assistance is needed”, and so on. The details vary, but the usual story is that a person, often a government or bank employee, knows of a large amount of unclaimed money or gold which he cannot access directly, usually because he has no right to it. Such people, who may be real but impersonated people or fictitious characters played by the con artist, could include, for example, the wife or son of a deposed African leader or dictator who has amassed a stolen fortune, or a bank employee who knows of a terminally ill wealthy person with no relatives or a wealthy foreigner who deposited money in the bank just before dying in a plane crash (leaving no will or known next of kin), a US soldier who has stumbled upon a hidden cache of gold in Iraq, a business being audited by the government, a disgruntled worker or corrupt government official who has embezzled funds, a refugee, and similar characters. The money could be in the form of gold bullion, gold dust, money in a bank account, blood diamonds, a series of checks or bank drafts, and so forth. The sums involved are usually in the millions of dollars, and the investor is promised a large share, typically ten to forty percent, in return for assisting the fraudster to retrieve or expatriate the money. Although the vast majority of recipients do not respond to these emails, a very small percentage do, enough to make the fraud worthwhile, as many millions of messages can be sent daily.

Advice:

If you receive similar messages or invitations to connect be suspicious and always double check. The ingenious idea is that now scammers are using LinkedIn which is known as a social platform for professionals, which automatically give the scammer more credibility.

If you recently connected with this person PIUS AVENIDA, better delete her from your connections.

Any questions can be submitted to: dan@e-crimeexpert.com
Additional information can be found at: http://www.e-crimeexppert.com
To find out more about Dan Manolescu, visit his LinkedIn page here.
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