With an estimated 90 billion e-mails sent worldwide everyday, chances are we have all received one that starts like this:
"My Dear, My name is Mr Kwame Mensah. I work as a Vault Manager with a Private Security Company based in Ghana. I bring good tidings to you today dear, though before now we do not know each other for the first time, but I believe strongly that my coming to you with this prospective business is divine."
"Good day Sir/Madam, We wish to notify you again that you were listed as a beneficiary to the total sum of £6,000,000.00 GBP in the codicil and last testament of the deceased."
These "Advanced Fee Fraud" scams often conclude with the requirement that we send a relatively small amount of money overseas for some form of "processing costs" in order for us to receive the divine windfall.
Most of us read these phishing scams, often dubbed Nigerian scams, and chuckle quietly at the author's loose but eager grasp of English, before consigning them to our trash bins...Or do we?
The Queensland Police Service estimate that more than half a million dollars is leaving the state every month from Aussies who have fallen for phishing scams, and has partnered with Nigeria's Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) along with local industry players to help combat the fraudsters.
In February, the Australasian Consumer Fraud Taskforce estimated that Aussies are being duped out of more than $700 million in online scams every year.
The director of the Australian High Tech Crime Centre recently stated that the increasing sophistication of phishing emails is keeping him awake at night.
Are we really that gullible?
Have you received any particularly imaginative, clever or ridiculously obvious scams?
Let us know what you think by