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Mercedes-Benz Prize Scam Email

Summary:
Email claims that the recipient has won a brand new Mercedes-Benz as well as a cash prize of 500,000.00 (Full commentary below).



Status:
False

Example:(Submitted, May 2007)
MERCEDES-BENZ
22 Garden Close, Stamford,
Lincs, PE9 2YP, London
United Kingdom
www.mercedes-benz.co.uk

OFFICIAL PRIZE NOTIFICATION!

This is to inform you that you have been selected for a cash prize of 500,000.00 ( Five Hundred Thousand Great British Pounds) and a brand new mercedes-benz Car , International programs held on the April 11th 2007 in London The United Kingdom.

Description Of mercedes-bezs Car to be Shipped to you.

BRAND:........................................Fift Edition
MODEL:.......................................2006 Model
COLOUR:......................................Metallic Blue
ENGINE TYPE:...........................2473cc 4- cylinder
POWER:........................................245bhp
TRANSMISSIONS:.......................Adaptive Automatic Transmission
FUEL:............................................49.1m pg (combined

The selection process was carried out through random selection in our computerized email selection system(ess) from a database of over 250,000 email addresses drawn from all the continents of the world.

The Mercedes-Benz Car Promotional Lottery is approved by the British Gaming Board and also Licensed by the The International Association of Gaming Regulators (IAGR). This lottery is the 3rd of its kind and we intend to sensitize the public.

To begin the processing of your prize you are to contact your claims officer through our accredited Prize Transfer agents and safely to your destination world wide linkage stated below:
==========
Mr. David Smith,
22 Garden Close, Stamford,
Lincs, PE9 2YP, London
United Kingdom
Email: info_processingagent06@yahoo.co.uk
Phone Number Tel: +44 70457 16881
==========

contact him, please provide him with your secret pin code x7pwyz2006 and your reference number VM:12052006/21. You are also advised to provide him with the under listed information as soon as possible:

Accept my hearty congratulations once again!
With Best Regards
Mr Henry Hills
Lottery Manager




Commentary:
According to this email, the lucky recipient has won, not only a brand new Mercedes-Benz motor vehicle but also a large cash prize. What's more, he or she supposedly won without even needing to buy a ticket or enter a draw because the winning email address was randomly selected via a "computerized email selection system".

However, not surprisingly, the claims in the message are entirely bogus. There is no Mercedes-Benz car prize, nor will the "winner" ever receive the promised cash.

Instead, the message is a lure designed to entice the victim into falling for a classic advance-fee scam. Those who fall for the bogus claims in the message will eventually be asked to pay up-front fees, supposedly to facilitate the release and transfer of the "winnings". The scammers will claim that the fees are necessary to cover insurance, tax, government charges or some other fictional requirement. They will insist that these fees have to be payed before the prize is released and cannot be deducted from the amount won.

Hapless victims who comply to these requests for advance fees will discover that the promised prizes are imaginary and that their money has disappeared, probably forever, into the coffers of the criminals running the scam.

Moreover, during subsequent correspondence with their victims, the scammers may request a large amount of sensitive personal information, ostensibly to allow transfer of the prize and to prove identity. If a victim complies with these requests, the scammers may eventually collect enough information to steal his or her identity.

Like many such scam messages, this one uses the name and website of a high-profile company in an attempt to add a veneer of credibility to the supposed lottery promotion. However, in spite of its claims, and the inclusion of a link to the genuine Mercedes-Benz website, this bogus lottery is in no way endorsed or condoned by Mercedes-Benz.

Scam emails can often be quickly identified by poor spelling and grammar as well as other telltale signs. If real, a promotion of this nature would be very unlikely to use a free Yahoo webmail account as a contact email address. Also, in a genuine promotion, messages would likely include direct links to further information about the promotion on the company website as well as legal information and detailed terms and conditions. The London street address used in this scam message has also been used in other scams, including one that falsely claimed to be from BMW.

Lottery scams are very common. A great many different versions of the same basic scam are operating continually and people from all over the world have fallen victim to them. Internet users should be very cautious of any email that claims that they have won money or prizes in a lottery that they have never entered. Similar scam messages are also distributed via fax and surface mail.

For detailed information about lottery scams, see:
Email Lottery Scams - International Lottery Scam Information

To view more examples of lottery scam emails, see:
Alphabetical List of Lottery Scam Examples


Last updated: 7th May 2007
First published: 7th May 2007

Write-up by Brett M.Christensen