St. Simons Wedding Planner :: Island Destination Weddings | Scam Central: Vendors Beware
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Scam Central: Vendors Beware

          There is this great commercial out on TV now where a man gets on a bus and sits down next to this woman, and begins speaking to her in discombobulated English about how she is his long lost cousin, and only she can help him retrieve his lottery winnings (or some such thing) by just handing over all her personal identification information.  Then an announcer comes on and says “these scams don’t work well in person, you shouldn??t fall for them online either.” The commercial, by the Alliance for Consumer Fraud Awareness, cracks me up every time I see it, because I’ve received loads of crazy email scams just like that one.          

          Most are worded in a very odd, ESL style of speech, using lowercase letters sometimes Interchanged with UpperCase lEtters as well.  Usually they’re completely ridiculous references to me having to send some of my banking information to my long lost uncle in Nigeria as I am, typically, “his only hope.”            

           In any event, most of the time these scams are easy to spot and easy to understand why it might not be the brightest of ideas to forward my bank account and routing information to some stranger via email.  But yesterday I received the following email to my Fabuluxe account: 

 “I’m Chris Darwin and i would like to inquire if you will be available to coordinate our wedding which would be taken place on the 16th of next month(February).I would like to know the necessary things needed and involved so as to make this event a worthwhile and remarkable one. I look forward to hearing from you soon.” 

       I thought it sounded like a scam email but replied anyway to get some additional information, and it became clear when she informed me they’d “already booked a band from MassacHusettS, uSA”  that this was not an entirely legit request.  I forwarded it to Terrica who explained that loads of people have already received it. 

         I did a little digging, and seemingly the scam here involves you acting as some sort of money launderer, i.e., they overpay you for your services and then ask you to send the extra money here or there, etc.  CrAzY!  Vendors beware!          

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6 Comments

  • I get those weird emails all the time! And they’ve been getting better too… the English is not as bad, and it’s almost believable. The weddings are usually coming up real soon, and the couple is always living in a different exotic country. At least I’m not the only one!

    January 15, 2008 at 11:18 am
  • “Yes, I have a wedding tomorrow, and have nothing planned! I am a Nigerian Prince though. Can I please send you 2.5 million dollars to pay for my wedding and its vendors, and you send me the rest. I so trust you. Thank you, sir”

    January 15, 2008 at 11:54 am
  • They are also all obsessed with the CocaCola Company.

    January 15, 2008 at 12:00 pm
  • I received that exact same email yesterday, word for word. Funny… they don’t seem to understand that Wisconsin and Georgia are not exactly on the same street. Here’s the email I always send in response to those scammers:

    Dear _____,

    I’m sorry, you must be mistaken. I received your email regarding wedding planning services for your [insert random state, usually New York] event, however I am located in Wisconsin and would not be able to assist you.

    You should also be aware that there are a number of scams bombarding the wedding industry with emails that sound very much like yours, which we are required to report to the FBI. If you are truly seeking wedding planning assistance from overseas, I suggest you speak with a wedding planner in your area who belongs to the Association of Bridal Consultants and can connect you with someone in the United States. If you continue to send emails like these to American wedding planners, you may risk being reported.

    Sincerely,

    Monica Gill

    For some reason, they never respond…

    January 15, 2008 at 1:03 pm
  • LOL Monica…I wonder why???

    The wireless connection must’ve gone bad in that Nigerian palace.

    January 15, 2008 at 3:43 pm
  • I *just* blogged about this very topic!

    http://shaunkrisher.wordpress.com/2008/01/09/dont-get-scammed/

    January 15, 2008 at 4:18 pm

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