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Victims never receive this non-existent fortune but are tricked into sending their money to the criminals, who remain anonymous. They hide their real identity and location by using fake names and fake postal addresses as well as communicating via anonymous free email accounts and mobile phones.
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Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:
Fraud email example:
From: DAVID PALMER <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 08 Aug 2006 01:58:50 -0400
Subject: REPLY IMMEDIATELY
I am David Palmer, staff of SMITH & WILLIAMSON Private Banking.
I am contacting you concerning a deceased customer and an investment he placed under our banks management three years ago.I would respectfully request that you keep the contents of this mail confidential and respect the integrity of the information you come by as a result of this mail.I contacted you independently of our investigation and no one is informed of this communication. I would like to intimate you with certain facts that I believe would be of interest to you.In 2000, the subject matter; came to our bank to engage in business discussions with our private banking division. He informed us that he had a financial portfolio of Thirty million united states dollars,which he wished to have us turn over (invest) on his behalf.I was the officer assigned to his case, I made numerous suggestions in line with my duties as the de-facto chief operations officer of the private banking sector, especially given the volume of funds he wished to put into our bank. We met on numerous occasions prior to any investments being placed. I encouraged him to consider various growth funds with prime ratings.
The favored route in my advise to customers is to start by assessing data on 6000 traditional stocks and bond managers and 2000 managers of alternative investments. Based on my advice, We spun the money around various opportunities and made attractive margins for our first months of operation, the accrued profit and interest stood at this point at over ten million United States Dollars, this margin was not the full potential of the fund but he desired low risk guaranteed returns on investments. In mid 2001, he asked that the money be liquidated because he needed to make an urgent investment requiring cash payments in here in the united kingdom. He directed that I liquidate the funds and deposit it with a security firm. I informed him that SMITH & WILLIAMSON would have to make special arrangements to have this done and in order not to circumvent due process, the bank would have to make a 9.5 % deduction from the funds to cater for banking and statutory charges. He complained about the charges but later came around when I explained to him the complexities of the task he was asking of us. Cash movement across boarders has become especially strict since the incidents of 9/11. I contacted my affiliate and made the funds available to the security firm.
I undertook all the processes and made sure I followed his precise instructions to the letter and had the funds deposited with the security firm. The Security Firm is a specialist private firm that accepts deposits from high net worth individuals and blue chip corporations that handle valuable products or undertake transactions that need immediate access to cash. This small and highly private organization is familiar especially to the highly placed and well-connected organizations. In line with instructions, the money was deposited with the security firm.
The deceased told me he wanted the money there in anticipation of his arrival from Norway later that week. This was the last communication we had, this transpired around 25th February 2003.In June last year, we got a call from the security firm informing us that the inactivity of that particular portfolio.
This was an astounding position as far as I was concerned, given the fact that I managed the private banking sector I was the only one who knew about the deposit at the security firm, and I could not understand why the deceased had not come forward to claim his deposit. I made futile efforts to locate the deceased. I immediately passed the task of locating him to the internal investigations department of SMITH & WILLIAMSON.
Four days later, information started to trickle in,apparently our client was dead. A person who suited his description was declared dead of a heart attack in Canne, South of France. We were soon enough able to identify the body and cause of death was confirmed. The bank immediately launched an investigation into possible surviving next of kin to alert about the situation and also to come forward to claim his estate. If you are familiar with private banking affairs, those who patronize our services usually prefer anonymity, but also some levels of detachment from conventional processes. In his bio-data form, he listed no next of kin. In the field of private banking, opening an account with us means no one will know of its existence, accounts are rarely held under a name; depositors use numbers and codes to make the accounts anonymous. This bank also gives the choice to depositors of having their mail sent to them or held at the bank itself, ensuring that there are no traces of the account and as I said, rarely do they nominate next of kin. Private banking clients apart from not nominating next of kin also usually in most cases leave wills in our care, in this case; the deceased died without a testate. In line with our internal processes for account holders who have passed away, we instituted our own investigations in good faith to determine who should have right to claim the estate. This investigation has for the past months been unfruitful.
We have scanned every continent and used our private investigation affiliate companies to get to the root of the problem. It is this investigation that resulted in my being furnished with your details as a possible relative of the deceased. My official capacity dictates that I am the only party to supervise the investigation and the only party to receive the results of the investigation. What this means, you being the last batch of names we have considered, is that our dear late fellow died with no known or identifiable family member. This leaves me as the only person with the full picture of what the prevailing situation is in relation to the deposit and the late beneficiary of the deposit.According to practice, The Security Firm will by the end of this financial year broadcast a request for statements of claim to SMITH & WILLIAMSON,failing to receive viable claims they will most probably revert the deposit back to SMITH & WILLIAMSON. This will result in the money entering the SMITH & WILLIAMSON accounting system and the portfolio will be out of my hands and out of the private banking division.
This will not happen if I have my way.What I wish to relate to you will smack of unethical practice but I want you to understand something. It is only an outsider to the banking world who finds the internal politics of the banking world aberrational. The world of private banking especially is fraught with huge rewards for those who occupy certain offices and oversee certain portfolios. You should have begun by now to put together the general direction of what I propose.There is Thirty million dollars deposited in a security firm, I alone have the deposit details and they will release the deposit to no one unless I instruct them to do so. I alone know of the existence of this deposit for as far as SMITH & WILLIAMSON is concerned, the transaction with our late customer concluded when I sent the funds to the security firm, all outstanding interactions in relation to the file are just customer services and due process. The security Firm has no single idea of whatâs the history or nature of the deposit. They are simply awaiting instructions to release the deposit to any party that comes forward. This is the situation. This bank has spent great amounts of money trying to track this manâs family; they have investigated for months and have found no family.
The investigation has come to an end.
My proposal; you share the same surname With our late client; I am prepared to place you in a position to instruct The security Firm to release the deposit to you as the closest surviving relation. Upon receipt of the deposit,I am prepared to share the money with you in half. That is: I will simply nominate you as the next of kin and have them release the deposit to you. We share the proceeds 50/50.I would have gone ahead to ask the funds be released to me, but that would have drawn a straight line to me and my involvement in claiming the deposit. But on the other hand, you with the same very name as the original depositor would easily pass as the beneficiary with right to claim. I assure you that I could have the deposit released to you within a few days. I will simply inform the bank of the final closing of the file relating to the deceased I will then officially communicate with The Security Firm and instruct them to release the deposit to you. With these two things: all is done.The alternative would be for us to have The Security Firm direct the funds to another bank with you as account holder. This way there will be no need for you to think of receiving the money from The Security Company. We can fine-tune this based on our interactions.
I am aware of the consequences of this proposal. I ask that if you find no interest in this project that you should discard this mail. I ask that you do not be vindictive and destructive. If my offer is of no appeal to you,delete this message and forget I ever contacted you. Do not destroy my career because you do not approve of my proposal. You may not know this but people like myself who have made tidy sums out of comparable situations run the whole private banking sector. I am not a criminal and what I do, I do not find against good conscience, this may be hard for you to understand, but the dynamics of my industry dictates that I make this move. Such opportunities only come ones' way once in a lifetime. I cannot let this chance pass me by, for once I find myself in total control of my destiny. These chances wont pass me by. I ask that you do not destroy my chance, if you will not work with me let me know and let me move on with my life but do not destroy me. I am a family man and this is an opportunity to provide them with new opportunities. There is a reward for this project and it is a task well worth undertaking.
I have evaluated the risks and the only risk I have here is from you refusing to work with me and alerting my bank.I am the only one who knows of this situation, good fortune has blessed you with a name that has planted you into the center of relevance in my life.Lets share the blessing.If you find yourself able to work with me, contact me through this email account email@example.com If you give me positive signals, I will initiate this process towards a conclusion. I wish to inform you that should you contact me via official channels.I will deny knowing you and about this project. I repeat, I do not want you contacting me through my official phone lines nor do I want you contacting me through my official email account. Contact me only through the numbers I will provide for you and also through this email address. I do not want any direct link between you and me.My official lines are not secure lines as they are periodically monitored to assess our level of customer care in line with our Total Quality Management Policy.Please observe this instruction religiously. Please,again, note I am a family man, I have a wife and children. I send you this mail not without a measure of fear as to what the consequences, but I know within me that nothing ventured is nothing gained and that success and riches never come easy or on a platter of gold.
This is the one truth I have learned from my private banking clients. Do not betray my confidence.Kindly send your response to my private email address firstname.lastname@example.org
I await your response.
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