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Pepsi Cola Bottling Company 'Grant Compensation' Advance Fee Scam

Message purporting to be from the Pepsi Cola Bottling Company claims that the recipient has won $890,000 in the company's 2013 "grant compensation" draw and need only tender an insurance fee of $141 to claim the prize.

Advance Fee Scam

© Samantha Craddock

Brief Analysis
The message is not from Pepsi or any of its affiliates.  And the recipient has won nothing at all. The email attempts to fool recipients into sending money and sensitive personal information to cybercriminals.

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Subject: Attention Consumer/Email Owner

Attention Consumer/Email Owner,

Your e-mail address was among the lucky winners of the Pepsi Cola Bottling Company 2013 
Grant compensation and You have therefore been approved for a lump sum payout of USD
$890,000.00 and Participants were selected through MTN Global Network online ballot 
system drawn. 

A Cheque of USD$890,000.00 has been Issued to you and deposited with the FedEx Courier 
Company (West Africa,Nigeria) For Delivery to you and For your information, we have 
paid the Delivery fee and Security Keeping fee & Shipping charges as well as the Vat 
fees but we did not pay for the Insurance fees because we don't know when you will be 
contacting them via email for your package, so you will have to pay the sum of $141 USD 
to the FedEx Delivery Department for the Insurance Fee to enable the insurance company 
of Nigeria  Insured your winnings Package for delivery to you at your residential 

Please Kindly reconfirm your Full Name{}, Postal address{} and telephone number{} to 
FedEx Courier Company Nigeria through the below email:
Email: [email protected]
Phone Number: +234 7063 281 899
Note: You are advised to contact FedEx as soon as possible.
As soon as you contact Fedex and their delivery team will give you the necessary 
payment procedure so that you can effect the payment for the Insurance Fee. As soon as 
they confirm your payment of $141 USD, they will not hesitate to work straight to the 
insurance company and insure your winning for delivery.

Yours faithfully,
Pepsi Cola Bottling Company

Detailed Analysis

This email, which purports to be from the Pepsi Cola Bottling Company, informs the "lucky" recipient that they have been chosen as the winner of an $890,000 prize in the company's 2013  "grant compensation". Supposedly, the winner was chosen via the random selection of his or her email address in a ballot operated by the "MTN Global Network".

According to the email, all the lucky winner need do to collect the unexpected windfall is pay FedEx a fee of $141 for insurance of the "package" containing the cheque. All other necessary fees have already been paid, stresses the message, which urges the recipient to contact FedEx Nigeria to arrange payment for the insurance.

Alas, the email is not from Pepsi or from any associated bottling companies or affiliated entities.  The email is an advance fee scam much like many thousands of similar scams that have gone before. The recipient has won nothing and there is no prize.

Those who believe the lies in the email and contact "FedEx" will be instructed to send the insurance fee via a money transfer service such as Western Union.  But, if victims actually do send money as requested, it is unlikely to be the last such request. Despite the claims that other costs have already been paid, the scammers will invent a series of sudden and unexpected fees that they will insist must be paid in advance before the prize money can be released. The requests for more fees will likely continue until victims empty their bank accounts or at last realize that they are embroiled in a scam.

The scammers may also use various ruses to trick victims into divulging personal and financial information. The information may later be collated and used to steal the identities of victims. 

Internet users should be cautious of any message that claims that they have won a large prize in a lottery or promotion that they have never entered and in which winners were selected randomly via their name or email address. Legitimate entities do not conduct their promotions in such a manner.

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Last updated: July 3, 2013
First published: July 3, 2013
By Brett M. Christensen
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