SNL and Nigerian Scams

Did anyone watch Saturday Night Live last night, March 7 2009?  The opening segment was one that hit home with us.  Will Forte was playing the role of Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, and announces that he is open to ideas from the public on how to fix the economic crisis.  There is even a reward being given out to the person who can come up with the best idea.  They get several callers, all with humorous ideas or comments, but it was the last caller who REALLY got my interest.  It was from Nkumo, a Nigerian Prince, who had $7 million in a bank account.  The problem is that he needs some money to cover the fees to get the money out.  If Timothy Geithner and the US government would give him the reward money that they have he would be more than happy to share a portion of the $7 million with them.


I think that it is really great that issues like this are making it into the popular shows like SNL, and that the writers are taking on the current issues.  It teaches people about these scams in a light-hearted and humorous way.  It brings the issue to the front of people’s minds and causes them to talk about it.


I also think it is ironic because I have been saying for a while that if the United States would do more to warn and educate people about scams it would help our economy.  In 2007 over $238 million was lost by United States citizens to scams.  And, that is just the amount for ONE YEAR.   If the money that is lost in scams were to stay in the United States, the economy might be doing a little better right now.