This morning, I received this email —
How are you doing,I hope all is well with you and family. I’m sorry for not informing you earlier about my trip to England for a Seminar,unfortunately, i misplaced my wallet on my way back to the Airport. I had no option but to send you an e-mail because i have no money to call and my phone does not work here.
I need a favor from you because i’m completely stranded and i need you to assist me with a soft loan of $1,450 to sort myself out of this mess and help myself return back home. Fortunately,there are western union and moneygram outlets here in the Airport.
I will appreciate whatever you can help me with and i promise to refund the money back to you as soon as i return. Kindly help me send the money through the closest moneygram or western union outlet to you using my complete details below:
Address: 7 Wardour Street London W1F 8ZD
Please help me to make the transfer as soon it’s convenient for you and once you have it sent, send me the money transfer control number with details used in sending it.
God bless you
I checked the email address, and it was my friend’s actual email address. We’d corresponded only a few days ago, so I was sure it was current. The punctuation is bad, but it’s not Nigerian scam bad — and my friend is not the greatest punctuater (and who would be after having his billfold stolen?).
But it just didn’t seem right. The cc: line in the email showed my friend’s own address and not mine, meaning this had been blind copied to other people, who might double up the payment. If he was in an airport, why the need for money? He surely already had his return ticket bought! And why no phone number?
And so I checked with a relative of his in town and learn that, indeed, it’s a scam. Someone had hacked into his Hotmail email account.
Therefore, if you receive a similar email, make a few phone calls. Don’t let the scammers get you. They’re not all bad spellers from Nigeria.