Would you like to lay claim to the fortune of an ailing heirless Nigerian prince? How about becoming a partner in a multi-billion dollar business originating in some obscure, unheard-of country?
If all these tricks sounds familiar, then you are among the millions of people worldwide who have been attacked by some of the most common email scams around. Now, another similar scam appears to be making the round—this time in the form of a letter impersonating Edward Young, the private secretary to Queen Elizabeth II.
The latest addition to this list of tech-based scamming techniques is being propagated through a medium that less commonly used by scammers nowadays; snail mail. That’s right, according to Paul Ridden, an unknown attacker is actually mailing out letters claiming to be from Buckingham Palace.
Does This Seem Fishy to You?
The letter opens by mentioning that in order to save the British economy, the queen is reaching out to a select few individuals that can lend the royal house sums ranging between £450,000 and £2,000,000. The money would apparently be used to ‘save and sustain the UK’s economy after brexit.’
According to the poorly written letter with abhorrent grammar, those that agree to lend money would enter into a contract where the crown would pay them 30% interest on the principal amount for a period of three months. As a bonus, lenders might also be able to join the Royal Warrant Holders Association—a list of companies that supply goods or services to the royal family.
Toward the end of the document, the scammer makes it clear that they want the offer to remain completely anonymous since it could “affect the agreements we have in order to obtain the bilateral agreement.” Following this ‘Young’ requests payment to a bitcoin address, and promises to send a contract over once the funds are received.
As of writing, the Bitcoin address ‘1sycBKECFgPBD3EiaTCcD2VCeobr8DrpD’ has only received nominal amounts, indicating nobody has fallen for the poorly executed scam.
Only an Idiot Would…
With the increasing use of the internet and email, almost every individual online has been exposed to some form of an internet scam attempt.
In order to protect individuals from such attacks, email service providers usually employ a number of security checks that automatically detect such scammy emails, before moving them to the spam folder.
Unfortunately, the physical door in the real world is deprived of any such security measure and remains as the most vulnerable target for such similar social engineering scam attempts and phishing attacks. However, such attempts are rare nowadays, likely due to the costs involved with mailing hundreds of unsuspecting victims.
This particular phishing attempt was brought to light by Paul Ridden, the CEO of Smarttask, a UK based technology and management firm. Commenting on the incident after posting about it on LinkedIn, Ridden said: “I always had the feeling that she would turn to me in an emergency to save the country.”—in reference to the queen.
Nevertheless, although this attempt is painfully obvious to most people, such scams have been known to claim some victims. Because of this, it is wise to stay vigilant when receiving such ‘offers’, since these can be far more sophisticated and elaborate scams than the aforementioned. One example is the Tron-scam scenario from earlier this year that BeInCrypto reported on.
What is the most ridiculous Bitcoin scam attempt you have ever seen? Let us know in the comments below!
Images are courtesy of Shutterstock.