Editor's note - I posted this entry on my older blog.
Befor going into the details, a bit of background first. Have you
heard of the Nigerian Scam? Here it how it operates - you receives an
unsolicited fax, email, or letter often concerning Nigeria or another
African nation containing either a money laundering or other illegal
proposal. A sample goes something like
FIRST, I MUST SOLICIT YOUR STRICTEST CONFIDENCE IN THIS
TRANSACTION. THIS IS BY VIRTUE OF ITS NATURE AS BEING UTTERLY
CONFIDENTIAL AND 'TOP SECRET'. I AM SURE AND HAVE CONFIDENCE OF
YOUR ABILITY AND RELIABILITY.
So you get glittery eyed and start dreaming. You reply back and say
"Yeah dude! i am in. Lets go and swindle gazillion dollars". Some more
emails follow. At some point, you are asked to pay up front an Advance
Fee of some sort or to extend credit. If you pay the money, there are
often many Complications which require still more advance payments
until you either quit, runs out of money, or both. Some times it may
go further. You may be asked for your bank account numbers, copies of
their passport and drivers licence and phone and fax numbers. What the
scamsters are doing is the Identity theft. Your bank account is
cleaned out once they have handed over all your details.
So after the gory details here is the story. Silicon.com decided to
follow up on the offer and see where it leads to. Silicon.com's Will
Sturgeon set up a Hotmail account under an assumed identity and
contacted the scamster (a Mr. Madu Frank). You can read the rest of
the story Silicon.com. Will Sturgeon made him run around in
circles. Really good read. Enjoy!