Nigerian Curse Scam

Status: Scam
According to the Arab News, the Nigerian bank scam has taken on a new twist. The scammers no longer tell you that they want to transfer $30 million into your bank account, or that you've won the European lottery. Now they inform you that you've been cursed, and you need to pay up to have the curse lifted. They bypass email and phone you directly to tell you this:

Abdul Rahman, sociology professor at Imam Muhammad Ibn Saud University, said he received one of these calls from an Arabic speaker who informed him that he had been cursed by a colleague. The caller then claimed that he could neutralize the evil spell provided a specified sum of money was transferred to a bank account in Mali. The operator even claimed he would reveal the identity of the colleague if payment were sent.

Actually, I don't think Arab News is correct to identify this as an evolution of the Nigerian bank scam. I've definitely heard of fake curse scams before, though I can't find a link to another example.

Con Artists

Posted on Mon Jan 16, 2006


And what happens when they f with a REAL witch doctor?
Posted by Craig  on  Tue Jan 17, 2006  at  04:57 AM
This scam is centuries old, probably millenia old. It's a standard stock-in-trade of palm readers and fortune-telling shops. Among Gypsy fortune-tellers the scam is called "boojo," boojo apparently being derived from a Romany term for a type of curse.
Typically, the pigeon is told that he/she has money that is cursed, and should give it or some significant portion of it to the fortune-teller to remove the curse.
Some big-city police departments have "Gypsy units" devoted more or less exclusively to this type of fraud.
Posted by Gary Cooper  in  Dallas, Texas, USA  on  Tue Jan 17, 2006  at  12:08 PM
I curse all of you, send me $200 or you will get horrid foot fungus, your car will break down, and your hair will fall out. I swear! I really did it once!!!

How could a curse scam like this even have a target? Who would believe them?
Posted by Draconegia  on  Tue Jan 17, 2006  at  03:06 PM
Forgot to put this bit:

This sounds more like a prank than a scam. If the only example of the "scam" is a collage professor recieveing a call, then it can't be very wide spread.
Posted by Draconegia  on  Tue Jan 17, 2006  at  03:11 PM
I should have said "millennia old." My typing is cursed.
Posted by Big Gary  in  Dallas, Texas, USA  on  Tue Jan 17, 2006  at  03:24 PM
Only a total moronic idiot would belive in curses.
Posted by Realist  on  Wed Jan 18, 2006  at  05:28 AM
This is a scam type which I know has in the past been perpetrated (although not by e-mail) among immigrants of Surinam, who's culture includes a belief in witchcraft.

To Realist: it just depends in which culture you are. Many non-western (and also some western) cultures have a belief in witchcraft.
Posted by LaMa  in  Europe  on  Wed Jan 18, 2006  at  07:12 AM
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