Scammers offer an apology

This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times)

There’s a new twist in the ongoing Nigerian scam drama so be on the lookout for an apology e-mail and an offer of compensation.

The delightful Mr Mark Wailers, of the Nigerian Ministry of Finanace no less, e-mailed me last week apologising for all those nasty scammers.

His e-mail says:

“Attention please am Mr. Mark Wailers from the Federal republic of Nigeria, Ministry of finance, we are sending you this mail in Regards to the scam that the citizens of Nigeria has done on the Internet.

We are very sorry for any inconveniency this would have cost to you and your country, the federal government of Nigeria decided to Budget the amount of $Eighty million dollars to compensate some number of lucky people that will receive this email for $50.000.00 each, so if you luckily receive this mail you have to contact us immediately so we can include your name among those to receive the draft.”

Woohoo, it must be my lucky day because I also got an e-mail telling me I’d won 1.3 million euros in a lottery I hadn’t even bought a ticket in and a long-lost distant relative had shuffled off somewhere on the other side of the world and left me all their dosh.

Funny how all these lawyers, finance ministry employees and international lottery people all have throwaway, freebie online e-mail addresses from Yahoo or Hotmail.

The scammers must still be getting a reasonable number of bites to continue with what I would have thought were pretty obvious lines of bull, and I can’t help thinking that perhaps anyone who gets ripped off in this way is perhaps highlighting just why they shouldn’t be allowed to have a computer or an internet connection.

I suppose sometimes greed blinds people to logic but really, if you fall for this then can I interest you in a slightly used Sydney Harbour bridge?


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