Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Any information or research into the rampant "Nigerian Scam" messages.

Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby meep » Mon Feb 15, 2010 7:58 am

From Spamfighter. I like the AFF abbreviation. I don't think I have noticed that before. Note the estimated loss in some select nations to advance fee fraud scams.

Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Ultrascan the Dutch investigation company reveals in its recently released "419 Advance Fee Fraud Statistics 2009" report that advance-fee frauds or AFFs continue to dupe Internet users across the globe.

AFFs are also called '419 scams' the name as derived from a statute of Nigerian criminal code. Nigeria was so rife with scams that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission of the country augmented efforts for law enforcement over the recent years in taking strong action against Internet scammers.

Meanwhile, according to the report, scammers carry out these frauds via a combination of different communication means. These are e-mails, social and commercial-networking websites, match-making websites, dating websites and gaming sites amongst others.

Underscoring these scams' malicious nature, Frank Engelsman, advance-free frauds specialist at Ultrascan stated that victimized computer users lost no less than US$9.3bn during 2009 that was higher than $6.3bn during 2008. PCWorld reported this during the end-week of January 2010.

The Ultrascan specialist added that the company was aware of a number of victims who had handed out a lot of money to the fraudsters. This sometimes even made the victims have their homes repossessed or risk a bank taking it over.

Indeed, Engelsman described 2009 as the most harmed year so far.

Alongside these discoveries, Ultrascan further reports that most perpetrators continue to be Nigerians, who acquire the association of local partners for assistance in dispatching fraudulent, phishing e-mails. Victims are falsely promised that they would get a reward if they follow the scammers' advice, which often involves handing out some money.

Believably, scams originated from nations other than Nigeria as well during 2009. Moreover, scammers are no longer attacking only English-speaking countries. As they acquire a broader reach, the numbers of victims escalate. With people in emerging economies acquiring computers along with a broadband connection, they get exposed to similar types of scams that created problems in other countries some ten years back.

Consequently, Vietnam, South Korea, China and India are being targeted immensely. Says Ultrascan, the three countries most affected with AFF losses during 2009 were China at $936m, the U.S at $2.1bn and the U.K at $1.2bn.

» SPAMfighter News - 13-02-2010
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby spamislame » Mon Feb 15, 2010 1:26 pm

I believe I am certainly proof that this article does not lie. I'm up to 70+ per day of only this type of spam. Averaging $1Billion USD every 3 - 4 days. It's getting ridiculous.

I hope they actually increase the volume, because finally nobody will believe that they have "won" or "inherited" so much money, so many times per day, every single day of the week. Haven't they ever read "The Boy Who Cried Wolf"?!

These really are some of the stupidest criminals out there.

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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby wahnula » Mon Feb 15, 2010 2:30 pm

Funny...I already deleted one that could have been the poster child for "Stupid and Lazy spammers". It was only about three lines long, like:

This is Peter Smith, I have to discuss with you about getting $50,000,000 out of my country, please help. Your share will be 30%. Please reply...


...or something to that effect. It's like he wasn't even trying. He did not even use "Mr." or "Dr." to describe himself. Maybe it was written by a child, or a loner without access to the template emails.
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby ahoier » Mon Feb 15, 2010 2:46 pm

Honestly, I think that's what makes the 419 so increasingly popular.....it doesn't necessarily take a botnet to run it. A loner with a handful of disposable free e-mail accounts, spread across a wide array of providers, accessed using proxies, and that's that.

All we can do is play whack-a-mole, and report the accounts to the mail service (AOHell, MSN, Hotmail,Yahoo, etc....) - but even then, I've seen some increasing crafty works of art, where they will register a new domain, for the sole use as a mail exchange (confirmed via Robtex). At this point in time, registrars are used to receiving reports of ToS violations regarding domains selling fake Rx, fake watches, etc.....well, now the criminals are registering domains with no use, but as a mail exchange....
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby AlphaCentauri » Mon Feb 15, 2010 6:35 pm

They can get away with it because people demand their ISP's filter the spam before they see it, and ISP's are happy to keep the crap from taking up space on their servers. So for example, my ISP doesn't even offer a graymail folder, and spamfiltering is not optional. Anything they don't like just doesn't arrive. You can have additional filtering that is even more stringent if you want zero spam, but still, no graymail folder. And if you read their user forums, the biggest complaint is that an occasional spam gets through, not that legitimate mail might be lost.

People really have no idea how many of these things are being sent. So when one does get through, it could be the first and only 419 spam someone sees. That terse email may get through spam filters that recognize all the others, as the spammer didn't mention the name of any developing countries, didn't mention bequests or executors of estates, didn't mention late husbands, didn't mention unclaimed money or corrupt government officials, etc. We know it's spam because we know no one would have any reason to email us about a dollar figure that high, but an innocent email joking about a celebrity severance package might look very similar to a computer. Personal spam filters that can whitelist legitimate senders are very good at dealing with it, but most ISPs aren't attempting to keep track of all their users' whitelists.
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby kabo0m » Tue Mar 23, 2010 3:59 am

I hope I am not hijacking this thread but recently I applied for a job for an "Evaluator" which was a fancy name for "Secret Shopper". I had been told about this job in email as the "job" was listed on a job board and I got alerts in email.

I was suspicious but told to apply by a job coach. Well lo and behold I was correct. I got a letter later with a money order for over a grand with my first "job" being to "evaluate" the postal service. Of course fees and my pay were already included so I had to cash the money order first and then send the rest to evaluate the postal service. I was to send $1300 to the UK to a fake person with my last name. The site got shut down thanks to complaints.

Image

202.71.108.107
Malaysia

Date: 2010/02/20
================
IP 202.71.108.107 = AS17971 = EASTGATE-AP Datacenter Management
Registrar: WEB COMMERCE COMMUNICATIONS LIMITED DBA WEBNIC.CC
Whois Server: whois.webnic.cc
Referral URL: http://www.webnic.cc
Name Server: NS63.ES2U.COM
Name Server: NS64.ES2U.COM
Status: clientDeleteProhibited
Status: clientTransferProhibited
Status: clientUpdateProhibited
Updated Date: 05-jan-2010
Creation Date: 04-jan-2010
Expiration Date: 04-jan-2011
Email pfransic@mail.com
Status dead
Whois Domain: regentresearch.com
Status: Protected

DNS:
ns63.es2u.com
ns64.es2u.com

Created: 2010-01-05 10:23:50
Expires: 2011-01-05 10:23:50
Last Modified: 2010-01-05 10:23:50

Registrant Contact:
Paul Francisco
Paul Francisco (pfransic@mail.com)
335 Britannia Road East Mississauga
Ontario, Canada, us 14801
P: +905.5981704 F: +0.0

Billing Contact:
Net Onboard Sdn Bhd
Net Onboard (support @ netonboard.com)
No. 31, Jalan Utama 2/18 Tmn Perindustrian Puchong Utam
Puchong, Selangor, my 47100
P: +603.80625088 F: +603.80624955
Date Added 2010-02-20 07:03
Updated 2010-03-05 16:47
Last edited by kabo0m on Thu Jun 10, 2010 8:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby meep » Tue Mar 23, 2010 9:50 am

I hope I am not hijacking this thread but recently I applied for a job for an "Evaluator" which was a fancy name for "Secret Shopper".


Not at all, I think sharing your stories may help a few people who try to google info when they come across something that seems scammy.

With so many people looking for work, no doubt people fall for "money mule" scams and / or they hand over their personal identifying info that is then used in identity theft. A website which tracks online job scams specifically is Phishbucket.org.
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby kabo0m » Sun Mar 28, 2010 4:39 am

meep wrote:Not at all, I think sharing your stories may help a few people who try to google info when they come across something that seems scammy.

With so many people looking for work, no doubt people fall for "money mule" scams and / or they hand over their personal identifying info that is then used in identity theft. A website which tracks online job scams specifically is Phishbucket.org.


Thank you. I just discovered today that one browser so far has implemented Phishbucket reporting directly which was a nice feature indeed. :)
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby wahnula » Sun Mar 28, 2010 2:48 pm

Another hard worker against money mule scams is http://www.bobbear.com

I send him all new spams I get for money mule offers and he closes 'em down a lot faster than I could. He posts the name of the company & webpage for future Googlers.

Sorry you almost got nailed Kab00m, but thanks for the pic!
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby meep » Sun Mar 28, 2010 5:29 pm

Wahnula, the owner of bobbear.co.uk has posted here before. :D Thanks for the reminder of his dedication to his cause.
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby ahoier » Mon Mar 29, 2010 12:25 pm

Is his only mode of contact that web form? :( I'd love to send him some of mine his way, but I got a lot of tabs open already when I'm spam hunting :) I guess I could add another :)
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby kabo0m » Wed Mar 31, 2010 3:23 am

wahnula wrote:Another hard worker against money mule scams is http://www.bobbear.com

I send him all new spams I get for money mule offers and he closes 'em down a lot faster than I could. He posts the name of the company & webpage for future Googlers.

Sorry you almost got nailed Kab00m, but thanks for the pic!


Thx. :) Should I send him the info on mine or would it really matter since the RegentResearch site got shut down this month?
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby AlphaCentauri » Wed Mar 31, 2010 8:31 am

kabo0m wrote:Thx. :) Should I send him the info on mine or would it really matter since the RegentResearch site got shut down this month?


I think he's interested in anything he doesn't have a sample of, so check to see if there are any identical scams listed. The scammers usually keep setting up identical sites as previous ones are shut down. Bobbear wants to make sure people who google the text in an email they get can find his site and learn it's a scam.
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Re: Scams of the ‘advance-fee fraud’ type intensify during 2009

Postby kabo0m » Fri Apr 02, 2010 3:30 am

AlphaCentauri wrote:
kabo0m wrote:Thx. :) Should I send him the info on mine or would it really matter since the RegentResearch site got shut down this month?


I think he's interested in anything he doesn't have a sample of, so check to see if there are any identical scams listed. The scammers usually keep setting up identical sites as previous ones are shut down. Bobbear wants to make sure people who google the text in an email they get can find his site and learn it's a scam.


Okay will do! :) I have turned off notification on my job searches now that I got a job again but I can still do the searches and see what new ones have taken its place! :silthumb:
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