Why compensation emails are always fake

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Gentle Giant

Giant Admin for a Day
Staff member
Assuming that you actually get here to this part, here's some reasons that a "compensation" email is fake, aside from the fact that it's ALWAYS a scam.

If you have read about how to identify a scam email (which is here) then in addition to things like bad grammar, poor spelling, even poorer punctuation, the use of free email servers, etc. these are some other things that make a compensation scam format completely bogus.

Let's start with a simple one:
1. "I want to compensate you"
In your daily life, how many people actually do this to you? Do people walk up to on the sidewalk and offer you thousands of dollars for "your past efforts"? Do people you actually know do that? Probably not. Just because it's on the internet doesn't make it any more real.

2. "You may not remember me"
Since you've probably never heard from this person in your life that's actually probably true. You don't remember that person because you've never met, talked with, or communicated with that person. The person who sent that email is a scammer/criminal who wants to steal your money.

3. I am using this opportunity to thank you for your great effort to our unfinished transfer of fund into your account due to one reason or the other best known to you.
What exactly what that reason best known to you? Do you even know this person? If you are reading that email wondering who this person is, then you've got a scam email if you can't remember him/her or you can't remember that business.

4. I am currently in....
The person often claims to be in some far-off country. Paraguay is really popular. Don't ask me why. Maybe it is the ultimate in remoteness for a scammer criminal in west Africa. Whoever sent you the email is probably not in Paraguay, Japan, Nepal or wherever else they claim to be. In posting these emails we try to highlite the originating ISP (the sending internet service provider) in red so you can see where the email was actually sent from. So if the person says that they are in Paraguay but the email was actually sent from Benin in Africa then you know it's a scam.

5. "I have deposited a check (cheque) with..."
OK. This person really wants to give you money. He or she made a check. Why did they deposit it with a security company? If they can make a check then why can't they put it in an envelope and mail it to you? Pretty ridiculous isn't it? The business with the "security company" is always a sign that what you have is a scam email. The "security company" is going to charge you a lot of money in order to release your compensation to you and in the end you will only be sending money, never getting any. That's why it's called the advanced-fee fraud. The best thing to do with the email is delete it.

6. There is a check/ATM card/ package deposited with..."
No there isn't. There is never a check. There is never an ATM card. There is never a package. There is only ever a scammer criminal who wants to steal your money.

7. "I gave the check to my secretary. Now contact my secretary".
This is as stupid as #5. If he can give the money to someone else why can't he just mail you the check? (Because there isn't a check? Correct!)

8. "I'm happy to inform you about my success in getting the fund transferred".
Good. I've been really worried about that. What a relief. Of course if, as in #2, you're asking yourself 'who is this person' then maybe you haven't been really worried about that. You might even be wondering what the heck he is talking about. It's all scammer/criminal talk for "I want to steal your money". Don't let him.

9. For your information, I have paid for the delivering Charge, Insurance premium and Clearance Certificate Fee of the Cheque..."
A lot of busy work for your friend. And the point here is the same as #5. If he can do all that work why not call DHL or Fedex, drop the check in an envelope and send it to you for about $35? (Because there isn't a check? Correct!)

10. ".....in Benin."
Ok, do you know where Benin is? Can you find it on a map? Are you in the business of doing things with people in Benin? If the answer is no then you have a scam email. This scam format seems to be particularly popular in Benin for some reason. Most of them are probably sent from there.

Come to think of it, are you in the habit of doing multi-million dollar deals with anyone? If you did don't you think you would remember the name of your business partner? I would. But this is the same as #2. You haven't heard of this person before because you probably don't do multi-million dollar deals and you for sure probably don't do them with people from Benin.

11. "Meanwhile, I did not forget your past efforts and attempts to assist me in transferring those funds despite that it failed us some how."
Boy did it ever fail. It probably failed so much that it is like #2 or #10. Wouldn't you remember some multi-million dollar deal going sour? I sure would.

12. "I travelled out of the country for a 3 [or 6] Months Course and I will not come back till end of ....."
I don't know what they mean by this. Maybe they mean they don't want email from you, they want you to email the secretary, ect. But then at the end of the email they always say to contact them so that you can "share the joy". So what's the deal, email or don't email? Scammers can't make up their minds. You might as well just delete that email.

Scamemrs are good sports about being criminals and so they make it easy to find them. As mentioned, typing in ALL CAPS is always a sign of a scam.

Another is "demurrage" which is a business and legal concept but one which scammers usually cannot spell correctly. Scammers have a vague concept of demurrage but they really don't know what it means. So anytime you see a scammer talking about demurrage they don't know what it means and you can be certain it's a scam email.

14. The check has expired.
Although it would depend on the banking laws in any particular country, most checks are good for about six (6) months from the date of issue. So if they make a check for you on January 1 the check is good until June 30. If the check has "expired" then it sat around for 6 months because someone is too lazy to mail it. Also, if a check "expired" you can go exchange it for a new one with another 6 months validity. NO ONE would cash and check and convert it into cash to put in a trunk box as an easier form of delivering money. This is an idiot scammer concept. Money is heavy.

15. "The manager told me that before the check will get to you that it will expire".
Apparently these checks are only valid for a couple of days. See #14 above.

16. "I have left your compensation fund in a VISA ATM CARD"
Re-iterating #6 above, we're seeing more and more of these scam formats offering ATM cards. No, there is never really an ATM card that's an idiotic way to give money to someone but it's a tried and true favorite with scammers so it's not likely to go out of style anytime soon. Just delete the email and don't waste your time with these people.
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