Stupid Scammer Watch: Shuvitt Inyurass Gets Phished!
By Ken Magill
Apparently Nigerian 419 scammers trade email addresses. Either that, or when one attempt to scam a mark fails, they revert to another.
Lately my alter ego, Shuvitt Inyurass, has been getting unsolicited scam attempts.
As long-time readers know, Shuvitt Inyurass was my fake name in a 2009 exchange with a Nigerian 419 scammer in which I introduced family members such as Pierce D. Boyle and Lihtta Pharty Inyurass.
I have used the fake name and email address, ShuvittInyurass_at_yahoo.com, to communicate with various likely scam artists over the ensuing years to see, among other things, if they can spot its obvious absurdity.
Originally, I initiated communicating with scammers from that address by finding 419 scams in my other accounts and replying to them from the ShuvittInyurass account.
I can’t pinpoint when, but at some point unsolicited scams began arriving in that account. Not a lot, mind you, something like three or four per month.
And until last week, they were all 419 scams where the crooks dangle a huge sum of money in front of the recipient and claim they just need some help getting it out of the country and will be willing to share a large chunk of it in return.
If the recipient bites, a typical 419 scammer will ask for an upfront fee to bribe local officials. Of course, there is no money and the scammer will keep asking for more upfront fees until the mark is tapped out.
In any case, on June 8, an email purporting itself to be from PayPal customer service arrived saying Shuvitt Inyurass’s account had been suspended.
It was even personalized:
“Hello shuvittinyurass,” the message began.
“PayPal is constantly working to ensure security by regularly screening the accounts in our system. We recently reviewed your account, and we need more information to help us provide you with secure service. Until we can collect this information, your access to sensitive account features will be limited.”
The message then asked Shuvitt Inyurass to download some documents, which, thankfully, he was smart enough not to do.
The best part of the email was the footer explaining why Shuvitt Inyurass should not reply:
“This email was sent to shuvittinyurass[at]yahoo.com, because your email address is registered with PayPal, please don't reply to this email. It'll just confuse the computer that sent it and you won't get a response.”
Whatever you do, don’t confuse the computer. It just pisses ‘em off and they give you the silent treatment.