Message purporting to be from MoneyGram claims that the company is rewarding customers with prizes of $60,000 as a means of celebrating its 73rd Anniversary.
The message is not from MoneyGram and recipients have not been selected for a $60,000 reward. In fact, the message is a ruse designed to trick recipients into sending money and personal information to online criminals.
For 73 years, Money Gram International, Inc. has been connecting people. At Money Gram, there’s
so much more than money you’re sending. Every sender and Receiver is important to us. To
celebrate our 73rd Anniversary, we’re rewarding our customers with prizes of USD60, 000.00.
The Promotion is open to everyone around the globe aged 18 or over. The Promotion is valid from
[dates change in different versions of the scam email] and while Stocks last, both dates inclusive, and such
longer period as determined by Money Gram in its absolute discretion.
Because you sent money on-line, from an agent location or received money through Money Gram
International, Inc, you’ve been selected. However, you are required to forward the following
information for immediate payment of your USD60, 000.00.
1.) Bank Name;
3.) Account Number:
4.) Bank Address:
5.) Swift Code or Routing Number:
6.) Country Of Residence:
7.) Your Mobile Telephone Number:You will be contacted by Money Gram International, Inc in the next 24 hours as Soon as you
forward your required information and you will receive the USD60, 000.00 prizes immediately from
Names: Mr. David Lee,
Address: No. 85 Queen Victoria Street, London EC4V 4AB
Tell: +44 703 174 9610
Fax: +44 844 774 2071
Save time, send money, earn rewards! Money Gram is a service people trust.ANNIVERSARY DAY
Thank you for using Money Gram!
We endeavor to maintain physical, electronic and procedural safeguards to guard your Information.
We also endeavor to restrict Information access to our employees, agents and representatives that
need to know it. Money Gram will never disclose your personal or billing information to a third party.
This message, which purports to be from international funds transfer company MoneyGram, informs recipients that they have been selected to receive a reward of $60,000. According to the message, the company is offering the cash prizes to customers as a means of celebrating its 73rd anniversary.
Recipients are urged to email personal details to the “Promotion Officer” to claim their prize. Some versions of the supposed notification message arrive as Microsoft Word attachments. In ComicSans font, no less.
However, the message is not from MoneyGram and the recipient has not been rewarded with so much as a cent. The message is an advance fee scam designed to extract both money and personal information from victims.
Those who send their information as requested will be asked to pay upfront fees, ostensibly to allow processing of the prize money. The criminals operating the scam will claim that the requested money is required to cover costs such as insurance, legal, banking and transfer fees. The scammers will ask for a whole series of – totally imaginary – fees that they will insist must be paid in advance if the prize is to be awarded. They will claim that the fees cannot be paid from the prize itself for legal reasons. Requests may continue until victims finally realise that they are being scammed or simply run out of available funds to send.
Sadly, victims are extremely unlikely to see a return of the funds that they have sent to the criminals. And, of course, they will never get the promised $60,000, which never existed to begin with.
Moreover, during the course of the scam, the criminals may collect a large amount of personal and financial information from their victims. The scammers begin collecting this information from the outset, via the initial message. Later, they may ask for further information, ostensibly to verify the victim’s identity and arrange bank transfers.
Thus, as well as losing their money directly, victims may also have their identities stolen.
Versions of this scam email have been distributed since at least 2013. From time to time, the scammers will change the dates and a few other minor details in the message and relaunch it.
Advance fee scams are very common. This example is just a reworking of a typical lottery scam. The scammers often hijack the names and logos of high profile companies as a means of making their claims seem more credible.
Be wary of any message that claims that you have been randomly selected as the winner of a large sum of money in a lottery or promotion that you have never even entered. Genuine promotions do not operate in this manner.
Last updated: November 24, 2016
First published: September 19, 2013
By Brett M. Christensen