Goldman Facebook Pitch Or Nigerian Email Scam? : Planet Money "When you have a chance I wanted to find a time to discuss a highly confidential and time sensitive investment opportunity in a private company... ."
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Goldman Facebook Pitch Or Nigerian Email Scam?

Goldman Sachs recently emailed wealthy clients who might be interested in investing in Facebook. The WSJ's Deal Journal got a peek at the email — and noticed a a striking resemblance to the language in a Nigerian email scam.

Goldman's message begins:

When you have a chance I wanted to find a time to discuss a highly confidential and time sensitive investment opportunity in a private company ...

For confidentiality reasons, I am unable to tell you the name of the company unless you agree not to use such information other than in connection with your evaluation of the investment opportunity and to keep all information that we reveal to you strictly confidential.

And, for comparison, here's a Nigerian email quoted by Deal Journal:

FIRST, I MUST SOLICIT YOUR STRICTEST CONFIDENCE IN THIS TRANSACTION. THIS IS BY VIRTUE OF ITS NATURE AS BEING UTTERLY CONFIDENTIAL AND ‘TOP SECRET’. I AM SURE AND HAVE CONFIDENCE OF YOUR ABILITY AND RELIABILITY TO PROSECUTE A TRANSACTION OF THIS GREAT MAGNITUDE INVOLVING A PENDING TRANSACTION REQUIRING MAXIIMUM CONFIDENCE.

Goldman, by the way, had an overwhelming response from clients who were interested in investing in Facebook. Here's more from the FT.