I just got the following joke-junk e-mail from a "Henry Paulson." I did not make this up (i wish I had); it was actually in my e-mail inbox. Here it is:
Bright Greetings Dear American:
I need to ask you to support an urgent and important business
relationship with a transfer of funds of great magnitude.
I am Ministry of Treasury of the Republic of America. My country has
had a crisis that has caused the need for a large transfer of funds of 700
billion dollars US. If you would assist me in this transfer, it would be most
profitable to you.
I am working with renowned Mr. Phil Gram, lobbyist for UBS, who will be
my replacement as Ministry of Treasury in January. As a Senator, you may
know him as the leader of the American banking deregulation movement in the
1990s. This transactin is 100% safe.
This is a matter of great urgency. We need a blank check. We need the
funds as quickly as possible. We cannot directly transfer these funds in the
names of our close friends because we are constantly under surveillance. My
lawyer advised me that I should look for reliable and trustworthy
person who will act as a next of kin so the funds can be transferred.
Please reply with all of your bank account, IRA and college fund account
numbers and those of your children and grandchildren to
[email protected] so that we transfer your commission for
this transaction. After I receive your information, I will respond with
detailed information about safeguards that will be used to protect the
Wonderful salutations to you cherish friend from Republic of America.
Minister of Treasury Paulson
This is brilliant. It perfectly mimicks the language and tone of those scam e-mails you get from supposed financial authorities or investment managers in some part of western Africa: It is worth sending around.