Running a French Holiday Gite in Rural Brittany

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Woken up last night by a Nigerian scammer

I'm in India right now which is 5 and a half hours ahead of GMT. I think I'm surviving on less sleep than normal because I'm going to bed at 2am IST every morning (still 8:30pm UK time) and getting up at 7:30am IST (a horrible 2am GMT).

This morning though I was woken up at middle-of-the-night o'clock by a text message telling me that I'd received a Gite booking enquiry. I read the text, decided it could wait until morning, and turned over back to sleep again.

When I got in to the office I read the enquiry that had disturbed me in the night. Here it is in full, as it's a classic example of the scam artform:
The start date you are interested in: 2/4/2011
For how long: 4 Weeks

Your contact information
Name : jean frank
Street Address : 11 rd clement
Town/City : Canada
E-mail :

Type your message here to include any special Requirements or Comments:
Interesting in your property for the period below:
Checking date:1st of April 2011
Checking out :30th April 2011.
Let me know the cost for the period .
adult on party :2
And do you have internet?as we been using our Pc for our stay.
Looking forward to hear from you asap! Thanks.

Message requested by IP address:
Date/Time: 26/02/2011 23:04:35

Immediately suspicious by the long booking duration, the not great English, and the disposable email address with a number in it, I went to check the IP address at the bottom which this particular holiday rental site helpfully adds to the bottom of the email.
(reminder to self, investigate adding enquirer IP address details to the Gite booking enquiry form on my own website).

Anyway, Domaintools' whois site translated the IP address into details of where this network address is actually registered:

IP Location: Nigeria Lagos Dial Pool Subnet For Lagos Subscribers

And that's all I needed to know. Thanks Mr Scammer, your Email has been promptly consigned to the junk folder!

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