To the General Public: Please delete as applicable.
Please let me introduce myself, I am not a former (banker/government official/religious leader) of (Libya/any other nation) where a dubious infrastructure might allow for millions of (pounds/dollars/euros) to become available to me, nor am I the (son/daughter/niece/nephew/2nd cousin twice removed) of an (oil/gas/diamond/other) (millionaire/billionaire/smuggler/other), I am in fact a person who (works for a living/is a security consultant/blogs) and is (honest/trustworthy/not directly after your cash), I am not going you to offer you untold riches _but_ I _am_ going to offer you an opportunity to (hold on to what you have/not look like a complete berk/not fund criminals &&|| terrorists).
Listen to me carefully – I realise that this letter may be less believeable than the ones you normally recieve, partially because the grammar and spelling is close to correct, but also because it doesn’t offer you, someone who has no rhyme or reason to expect it, something for nothing.
I don’t wish to undermine your confidence in any way, however, you haven’t been singled out as an example of upstanding public decency or because of your obvious intellegence – rather because somewhere, at some time, your e-mail address made it onto the public internet – they don’t even know who you are – they have spammed you, along with 100,000,000 other people in the hope of a 0.1% return on their targets.
If you answer their e-mail, you will be strung along in a classic scam where, over the promise of a large sum of money, they will get you to send them larger and larger (management fees/bribes/charges) until, at last, you have none of your money and they have all of it.
I’ll do you a deal – if it makes you feel better – you can all send me (£10/$10/E10) and I’ll pretend that I’ve got something for you for 10 minutes – I’ll even send you an e-mail with an excuse why it hasn’t been transfered to you immediately – but we’ll call it quits there. I’ll give your money to the NSPCC, and you can keep the rest, and the criminals get none. What do you say ?
I write this now, because, as is the way of the world, when an event happens, the (less ethical/criminals/scum) take advantage of the (more gullible/less savvy/dumb/unfortunate), and I’ve a vain hope that perhaps this might stop just one person falling for it.
The general rule of the world is – “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is” – if you have any doubt about something why not drop me a line, and I’ll have a look at it for you – if it is true, I’ll ask for my (£10/$10/E10) for the NSPCC and you can keep the rest – if it’s not, which I’m willing to bet on, then you’ve saved yourself a fortune !