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More annoying than SARS - letter from SIerra Leone...

 
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Roger



Joined: 19 Jan 2003
Posts: 9138

PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2003 3:22 am    Post subject: More annoying than SARS - letter from SIerra Leone... Reply with quote

Good day, fellow TEFLers,
but not the same to certain others...
I just received a PM from (I want to write that person's name in such a fashion that he knows what I think of him, but this website transforms such "abuses" into *beep!), allegedly based in Sierra Leone (but could be in Nigeria for that matter)!

This PM arrived from a non-TEFL person, and it might have been posted to many others here as well.

The poster claims to have received my particulars from someone (not named), and he "trusts" me totally!

Thanks, but what's the reason for writing?

I did not read the rest of this PM because I immediately had the sensation of a deja-vu, one that has to do with sleaze, deception, conning, pyramid schemes, mendacity and so on.

In short, many of us get such e-mails from Nigerians or Sierraleonians begging us to help them transfer their ill-gotten millions (yes!) of euros (yes, or US dollars!) out of their country, which normally obstinately refuses to allow this to happen. Unless, of course, someone dumb enough to "help" them steps in...
You are NOT going to ever see any penny/cent/fen from these millions, no matter how hard you try!

You are going to be asked to meet certain minimum payment requirements (settle the transfer bill upfront, pay a fee to the Sierra Leonian Governor of the National Bank, you imagine it, you pay it!).

I have replied to that guy in kind, not using any slang, but I guess there are a few unsuspecting or impoverished TEFLers out there that would too unselfishly (Oh what an oxymoron!) help a crook in West Africa!

Unless this guy pays me a modest fee first, I am not going to oblige...


But, on the other hand: Who is browsing on our forums, apart from teachers...???
Ladies of the night? Triads of Hong Kong? Russian mafiosi? Sicilian Ndrengheta?The PSB of Zhongnanhai? Tax bureau?
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bnix



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 645

PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2003 3:48 am    Post subject: Scams?Well,Now Just a Minute..... Reply with quote

Hey,Rog,you mean some guy(and damnit,not even someone in this "profession"!) is trying to scam TESOL teachers! The unmitigated gall!Infringing on the legit(@#!!!???) territory of hakwon owners,other private school "businessmen", people running cert programs that they swear"you must have in order to be a good teacher.blah,blah"

Well, yeah...but Rog,,,SARS can be pretty DAMNED annoying,you know,unless you have a death wish or a sudden urge to shuffle off this mortal coil(as opposed to "Shuffling Off to Buffalo")...

I am sure the newbies and other innocents will appreciate your info...now they only have to worry about the cert programs...and whether that "honest"private school(named Best English or something equally absurd) will actually PAY them.

As for browsers,there is a certain,unsubstantiated rumor that a certain recently deposed despot is browsing in hopes of "starting a new career"!So he DOESN"T speak much English? So what? Laughing Rolling Eyes
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omar805



Joined: 18 Jan 2003
Posts: 69
Location: Thailand

PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2003 4:17 am    Post subject: similar message Reply with quote

Last week, I received a similar type message but supposedly from someone in the Republic of the Congo - he wanted my help to transfer money (14 million dollars!) into my home country. Beware ....
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Selyer



Joined: 04 Feb 2003
Posts: 62
Location: Poland

PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2003 4:28 am    Post subject: $$ for nothing Reply with quote

Hey Rog. I got the same offer (or one similar) via email. Hopefully anybody else who may have received it has enough common sense to realize that "if it sounds too good to be true...!!"

Perhaps we should pass it on to the recently deposed despot Bnix mentioned! Razz
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12169
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2003 9:29 am    Post subject: naive Reply with quote

You would have to be pretty naive to fall for the "Nigerian Advance Fee " scam. I wonder why they are targetting TEFL teachers ? I thought we were all smart cookies au fait with the ways of the world ?

Or is the truth that most of us would have problems with achieving three digits in a measured intelligence score ?


Last edited by scot47 on Fri Apr 25, 2003 10:35 am; edited 1 time in total
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Celeste



Joined: 17 Jan 2003
Posts: 814
Location: Fukuoka City, Japan

PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2003 9:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have been getting these e-mails for months on the address that I use specifically for esl sites- coincidence??? Not a chance. Also, Korean recruiters have sent me some job offers. (Hence the reason I have a special e-mail address for use on ESL sites!)
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Lucy Snow



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 218
Location: US

PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2003 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What you have to wonder about is, how much money do they think we have? These scamsters must be hitting the bottom of the barrel if they're targeting teahers of ESL.
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Shaman



Joined: 06 Apr 2003
Posts: 446
Location: Hammertown

PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2003 1:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

An excerpt from the Better Business Bureau:

Letter From Nigeria Promising Big Profits
A criminal syndicate in Nigeria continued to target small businesses this year with promises of big profits for businesses that "invest" in their phony operation. The faxes and letters they send prey on greed and gullibility. When individuals respond, they can expect a lot of fast-talk and intimidation... but no financial gains.

Another scam is the emergence of the pay-per-minute search engine. MSN will be introducing one soon too, so keep your heads up when surfing people.

Shaman
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Stephen Jones



Joined: 21 Feb 2003
Posts: 4124

PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2003 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They are called 419 scams after the relevant article in the Nigerian Criminal Code.

If you go to www.theregister.co.uk it's "Cash and Carrion" online shop will sell you a 419 T-shirt emblazoned with " 419: My money all went to Nigeria and all I got was this lousy T-shirt".

As to targeting EFL teachers, perhaps it's in revenge for the fact that when the British ruled Nogeria they did nothing for twenty years about somebody in Liverpool carrying out an identical scam involving taking money for nen-existent correspondence classes. You can read about it in the second volume of Wole Soyinka's autobography called "Voyage Round My Father" in tribute to John Mortimer.
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 15965
Location: USA

PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2003 3:00 pm    Post subject: Deja Vu all over again Reply with quote

What amazes me is how long this scam has been around and yet apparently people still fall for it.

I have kept for laugh value a copy of a letter I opened in the office mail back in the early 70's.

Same English errors, same ridiculous concept, same warning articles about it in the media, and still people fall for it.

I agree with Lucy. The ESLers that have the money would also have been around long enough to have heard of this one long ago. Smile
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