fighting spam and scams on the Internet
"419" Scam – Advance Fee / Fake Lottery Scam
The so-called "419" scam is a type of fraud dominated by criminals from Nigeria and other countries in Africa. Victims of the scam are promised a large amount of money, such as a lottery prize, inheritance, money sitting in some bank account, etc.
Victims never receive this non-existent fortune but are tricked into sending their money to the criminals, who remain anonymous. They hide their real identity and location by using fake names and fake postal addresses as well as communicating via anonymous free email accounts and mobile phones.
Keep in mind that scammers DO NOT use their real names when defrauding people.
The criminals either abuse names of real people or companies or invent names or addresses.
Any real people or companies mentioned below have NO CONNECTION to the scammers!
Read more about such scams here or in our 419 FAQ. Use the Scam-O-Matic to verify suspect emails.
Click here to report a problem with this page.
Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:
- This email uses a separate reply address that is different from the sender address. Spammers use this to get replies even when the original spam sending accounts have been shut down. Also, sometimes the sender addresses are legitimate looking but fake and only the reply address is actually an email account controlled by the scammers.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "00,000.00" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- This email message is a fake lottery scam. Consider the following facts about real lotteries:
- They don't notify winners by email.
- You can't win without first buying a lottery ticket.
- They don't randomly select email addresses to award prizes to.
- They don't use free email accounts (Yahoo, Hotmail, etc) to communicate with you.
- They don't tell you to call a mobile phone number.
- They don't tell you to keep your winnings secret.
- They will never ask a winner to pay any fees to receive a prize!
Fraud email example:
From: "Visa CardX/MsnX INTERNATIONAL" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 2 Nov 2009 13:35:03 -0800
Subject: CONGRATULATIONS!!! Your E-mail Has Won X500,000.00 GBP
Visa Card® / Msn® INTERNATIONAL MEGA JACKPOT
440 THE STRAND LONDON, WC2R 0QS
ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
DIRECTOR:Dr Glenn Edward
Email Ref No:VCard/699/33/2009
AMOUNT WON:500,000.00GBP (Five Hundred Thousand Great Britain Pounds).
This email address has brought you an unexpected luck,Your e-mail address was selected and confirmed by our co-sponsor Msn International,through their latest internet software.You are therefore been approved by Visa Card Int./Msn UK the sum of 500,000.00 (Five Hundred Thousand Great Britain Pounds).
CONTACT CLAIMS ADMINISTRATOR
NAME: Robert James
Visa Card® /Msn® Promotion Department
Do email the above Claims Administrator, at once with all the claims requirements below.To avoid unnecessary delay.They are needed to proceed.
1. Full Name:_____________________
4. Age:________Date of Birth:___________
6. Cell Phone:___________Fax:___________
7. State of Origin:_________Country:_______
8.Winning No:_______Email Ref No:______
PROCEEDURES / RIGHTS AND PRECAUTIONS.
Visa Card® /Msn® Mega Jackpot
©2009 Microsoft Corporation.All rights reserved.
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