Nigeria type scammers trying to fraud small birding traveller agent.

by Gunnar Engblom on March 6, 2009

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Nigeria scam hitting on Peruvian birding company

It is hard to believe that anyone would actually fall for the scam emails stating that you have won, inherited or are asked to store millions of dollars. These are know as NIgeria scams. But a scam type using the same methods is also used to buy items (often on ebay) or services. The other day I got a mail asking for a two week trip.

Here is the mail:

Goodday,

I want to make a reservation for two adults(couple) starting from 14/102009 – 28/10/2009. However,a Certified Bank Cheque of 7,550 EURO will be sent to you, that will cover your rental services and you should keep the remaining money which will be used by the couple for their daily welfare on their arrival.

So,confirm this and provide me with the followings:
(1)The total costof the reservation for the 14 days starting from 14/10/2009 – 28/10/2009
(2) YOUR FULL NAME (name for cheque of 7,550 EUROS )
(3)ADDRESS (for chequedelivery) (4) PHONE NUMBERS. for payment to be delivered to you.Please remember that this business requires prompt response.I also hope there stay will be made comfortable.The clients name are below for the paper work Timothy and Ann King 12 London Rd . .Ashford. Middx. TW15 3AAUK .

Thanks.
David Cole

One could almost believe it is legitimate, because they are asking for a service we can actually provide.  However, suspicion rises when no particular tour is mentioned. Anyway, I decided to play along this one time, because it could be a good excersize to warn others against these practices.

Here is my reply:

Dear David

Thanks so much for this reservation. I assume it for the 15 day birdwatching tour in Northern Peru.
The cost of the trip for two people is 3680 US$ per person – and thus the total is 7360 US$  approximately 5850 Euro.

You find the bank details on our web-site.

http://www.kolibriexpeditions.com/birdingperukolibri/payment.asp

Sincerely

Gunnar Engblom

Learn how to recognize the Nigeria Scams on this great wikipedia link.

I shall post updates on this page…..so come back to pay us another visit.

Image by Don Hankins via Creative Commons license
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{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Roy March 27, 2009 at 1:23 pm

i just got the same email
i was going to respond but now i won’t!
what tipped me off is

“However,a Certified Bank Cheque of 7,550 EURO will be sent to you,
that will cover our rental services and you should keep the remaining money which will be used by the couple for their daily welfare on their arrival.”

This makes no sense for my business, i charge much less than 7,550 euro – why would they give me about 8x what i charge?

thanks for posting this now i have confirmed the scam without having to send emails back and forth to them. They must have found me somehow through google because i’m super tiny biz that is 100% word of mouth

klok March 27, 2009 at 1:33 pm

this is what i got too day we own a campsite i thank you for your warning
this is the email

Goodday, I want to make a reservation for two adults(couple) starting from 14/10/2009- 28/10/2009. However,a Certified Bank Cheque of 7,550 EURO will be sent to you, that will cover our rental services and you should keep the remaining money which will be used by the couple for their daily welfare on their arrival. So,confirm this and provide me with the followings: (1)The total costof the reservation for the 14 days starting from 14/10/2009- 28/10/2009(2) YOUR FULL NAME (name for cheque of 7,550 EUROS )(3)ADDRESS (for cheque delivery)(4) PHONE NUMBERS. for payment to be delivered to you. Please remember that this business requires prompt response.I also hope there stay will be made comfortable.The clients name are below for the paper work Timothy and Ann King 12 London Rd . .Ashford. Middx. TW15 3AAUK . Thanks.David Cole

Carin March 28, 2009 at 5:20 am

Hi, I’m Carin from Holland,
we got the same e-mail! We have a small B&B….”im going to warn my colleges!!

Het Boshuis March 28, 2009 at 9:05 am

We own e little holiday house and are renting it also. But not very commercial. I’ve received the same e-mail yesterday, with exactly the same text. Thank you for the warning,
Greetings, Marieke.

Vir Urlaub May 3, 2009 at 9:00 am

We got the same email and thanks to this site we haven’t replied.

Gunnar Engblom May 3, 2009 at 11:30 am

Thanks.

My idea was to continue conversations with the scammers, but as I wanted them to send the check to my bank in the US, they never returned the mail. Interesting is how many hits this post has recieved. Some 100 hits from search engines only and of those 36 the last three days.

Glad it has helped other small tourism businesses.

anneke May 6, 2009 at 3:53 pm

the’re still trying, I received the mail today.

Magali May 10, 2009 at 3:19 am

Hi,
I received the same e-mail yesterday only with different dates. We rent a small house in Brittany and the sum seemed rather enormous as the rent would’ve been 400 euros for two weeks at this time of the year.
Thanks for posting this and confirming my doubts!
Magali

Wolfgang Haager May 10, 2009 at 9:44 am

Thank you very much for this website.
We rent a small hooliday flat in Berlin and recieved today the same email.

Udo Binder May 11, 2009 at 2:27 am

Hi,
my mother received this e-mail on the weekend, she as a nice little holiday home in the middle of Germany. First of all I thought what a interesting offer, but could not believe it.
Thank für posting this and confirming my doubts!
Udo

Martin Bellin May 24, 2009 at 12:21 pm

Hi
we rent a room for B&B and a small holiday appartment in Switzerland. We got the same mail. And we got a similar one five days days ago from Mark Johnson in London. And our daughter works in a hotel, they got similar ones last year… even in hotels they try it with the same system.
WARNING they will ask you to pay back the Difference between the check and the (much lower) amount of your or room offer.
Or they take the reservation back and ask you to pay the full amount.
But for the check you will not get any money, because it’s not covered!!!
Delete the mail and do not answer!!!
Martin

gerrit May 25, 2009 at 3:25 am

Hello,

We got same email, we know directly that something is not OK because we normally charge only 700 euro and not 7500 for 2 weeks. So we first asked if they needed/wanted a special service but the reply was just please provide the info I request and book. So no real reply on our questions. I even think they do not really know English.

Gaz Morgan July 11, 2009 at 7:46 pm

Now Tim & Ann want to come & have some surfing lessons down under in Byron Bay. I did give them a reply as I thought it may be ok. I was expecting to have a big chrissy party in the Bay with all my best friends, so they too could have a few frosty ones with Tim & Ann, but bugger, its all a scam….

Andrew Harris July 31, 2009 at 2:38 am

Gunnar
We received our cheque today, yipee.
I thought it was a scam, but played along for fun.I didn’t think we would ever get a cheque. I thought we would frame the cheque and mount it on the wall. We run a Bush Camp and our average charge is AU$500. So I knew it wasn’t real.
Thanks for your help.

Het Boshuis January 2, 2010 at 10:56 pm

We own e little holiday house and are renting it also. But not very commercial. I've received the same e-mail yesterday, with exactly the same text. Thank you for the warning,
Greetings, Marieke.

Eddy April 9, 2010 at 12:58 pm

received the same mail today
they are very persistent, maybe it is good business despite of all the warnings

stay alert!
Eddy from Sweden

briancasatelli April 15, 2010 at 1:04 am

I think that at least at the initial stage, the aim is to see who replies. Then they know they've sent the “request” to an active email address. I don't know what their next steps would be to get private info from you.

I had to close my credit card last week. There was a small charge of $15 (I even got some [terrible] books sent to me from a book club). The credit card rep explained that the charge was just a test charge to see if the number worked. I suppose if I hadn't noticed it on my bill and didn't do anything, there would be some large charges to follow.

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