Nigerian Phishing Scam
There is a multitude of get rich quick schemes floating around the internet looking for the next gullible victim to draw into the trap. These schemes are sometimes cleverly disguised in what is now labeled as the new email scam called "phishing." Just as the name implies, these scammers are trying to catch someone by throwing out a hook, line, and sinker within the hidden depths of the online waters. If you frequently use the internet and/or email, sooner or later the odds are pretty good that you will receive some variation of phishing. This is why it is so important to educate yourself about all of the incredibly fraudulent methods they utilize to steal your hard earned cash. By doing this, it will help you avoid being caught by these "phishers."
The first place to start is by understanding how phishing works. In order to get people to bite on these scams, they present themselves as very credible personnel or even officials that represent various reputable institutions or businesses. Oftentimes, these will be websites, such as MySpace or AOL. They will pretend that they are trying to clear up a problem with your account, or they may be offering a special deal. Within this message, they ask you to click on a link to verify your personal information, which often means a credit card number. Ironically, they appear as if they are trying to make sure you are legit. They offer up some very convincing and valid looking home page, as well. Once they get your information, they could charge a great deal to your credit account or clean out your bank account before you even become suspicious.
The Nigerian scam is the latest one of many that has been released by the FBI. In this example, an email has been sent out by someone claiming to be a government official from Nigeria who proclaims to be trying to transfer millions of dollars out of the country illegally. This person is offering a percentage of this to anyone that will help him accomplish this. But first, they must send him several forms of I.D., such as their bank account number. Then, he convinces them to send several installments of money for various reasons, such as bribery of corrupt police, with a promise to repay. Even if someone eventually catches on to this ploy, this "phisher" has already gained enough access to the victim's private money accounts to completely wipe them out.
While you may be thinking this could never happen to you, these unscrupulous individuals have many devices with many disguises that have lured in numerous people who may have thought the same thing. The only way to keep this from happening to you is to be on alert at all times for suspicious looking and unsolicited emails; especially one that is from another country. Do not respond to them, and report them immediately to a law enforcement official.