Is this the world’s craziest Nigerian email scam?

Graham Cluley
Graham Cluley
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@[email protected]
@gcluley

Here’s an email scam (also known as a 419 scam, or a “letter from Nigeria”) that appeared in our spam traps earlier today.

It’s hard to believe that people fall for these kind of email scams, but they do.

But this one takes the biscuit, because it’s so barking mad.

UN email scam

ZENITH BANK COMPENSATION UHIT, IN AFFILIATION WITH THE UNITED NATIONS. Send a copy of your response to official email: [REDACTED]

ATTN: Sir/Madam,

How are you today? Hope all is well with you and family?,You nay not understand why this mail came to you.

We have been having a neeting for the passed 7 months which ended 2 days ago with the then secretary to the UNITED NATIONS.

This enail is to all the people that have been scanned in any part of the world, the UNITED NATIONS have agreed to compensate them with the sun of US$ 250,000.00 (Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand United States Dollars)

This includes every foriegn contractors that way have not received their contract sum, and people that have had an unfinished transaction of international businesses that failed due to Government problems etc.

Your name and email was in the list submitted by our Monitoring Team of Economic and Financial Crime Commission observers and this is why we are contacting you, this have been agreed upon and have been signed.

You are advised to contact Mr. Jin Ovia of ZENITH BANK NIGERIA PIC, as he is our representative in Nigeria, contact him immediately for your Cheque/ International Bank Draft OF USD$ 250,000.00 (Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand United States Dollars This funds are in a Bank Draft for security purpose ok? so he vill send it to you and you can clear it in any bank of your choice.

If you are fool enough to believe the email, then you’ll think that the United Nations has been meeting for seven months deciding on how to compensate the millions of people around the world who have been scammed in the past.

Their answer? Two hundred and fifty thousand American dollars. Well, that’s jolly nice of them, especially in these days of credit crunch.

All you have to do if you’ve ever been scammed is contact the UN’s representative in Nigeria (natch) who, it is claimed, will send you a cheque straight back for $250,000.

The fact that the email has been sent from a Gmail address shouldn’t worry you of course.

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My hope is that if you have been scammed in the past you won’t be scammed again, by a crazy email like this one.


Graham Cluley is an award-winning keynote speaker who has given presentations around the world about cybersecurity, hackers, and online privacy. A veteran of the computer security industry since the early 1990s, he wrote the first ever version of Dr Solomon's Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows, makes regular media appearances, and is the co-host of the popular "Smashing Security" podcast. Follow him on Twitter, Mastodon, Threads, Bluesky, or drop him an email.

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