Phishing For Relatives

This morning I learned that my dear uncle Mortimer J. Hudson died yesterday of a rare illness in New Uganda. I learned of this because his grieving widow, Mille Hudson, sent me an email in duress. She also mentioned that upon his death I inherited twenty-million Euros. Poor Uncle Mortimer – but hey, not poor me! I’m rich, I’m rich… not bad for a man I never knew existed. Now all I have to do is wait until she transfers the money into my checking account; that is after her bank makes certain it’s legitimate by first running my credit card number and then calling my bank with my account number. Oh, I can’t wait till I have all that money. I’m going to buy a house – no a yacht! Uh … wait a minute, why does my checking account say it’s overdrawn? (Phone rings) What do you mean I’ve maxed out my credit card? I haven’t used it since… oh hell!

That’s right, you guessed it! Mille now has the yacht while I’m faced with the hard fact that I don’t actually have an Uncle Mortimer… or an identity anymore. Taken, wiped out, I am no more. Or so my credit rating would make many believe. Thankfully that isn’t the case and if it were frankly I deserved the wrath of identity theft. Today alone I received nine emails regarding rich dead relatives that I never knew existed yet who loved and cared for me very much. If they were rich, regardless if they loved me or spoke highly of me or not, I would have been in contact with them in some capacity; one can never have too many wealthy relatives, right?   

With so many of these phishing emails being sent every day, it makes me wonder how many people fall for this. I could understand within the first year or two when these emails started to appear in inboxes that people may have been convinced uncle Mortimer left them a “great deal of money” in a foreign account, but even spam filters now have come to recognize just how “phishy” they smell. Another indication that something may be amiss is that nine emails with the same basic premise all came in on the same day… or there’s been some heck of a plague somewhere that CNN failed to inform the masses about—and all of my imaginary family managed to be expunged at the same time. Hum… makes me wonder – maybe this is a government cover-up and only the Barristers/attorneys managed to survive so they can inform all the beneficiaries. (If that isn’t a joke in the making if I ever saw one!)

The point is that these phishing people need to wise up. Now granted, Americans especially are a greedy lot, and if we can benefit from the loss of a relative that we never knew, sure maybe we’ll shed a few tears, but hey it’s free money. Who doesn’t like free money? Only approximately 30% of 255,000 cases of identity theft reported were of people scammed by phishing emails. ( But the scam has run its course. I’m looking for the newest and the greatest scam to make my spam filter scratch its’ fuzzy software and ask “Huh?” But while they’re coming up with their next trick I better go answer this email I just received from PayPal someone has tried to hack into my account and I need to click through to change my password. Hum… I wonder why something so important would end up in my spam folder?