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.
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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:
- "loan amount" (Beware of fake loan offers. Real lenders would not normally use free webmail addresses such as Yahoo, nor would they lend to individuals or small businesses in a different country from where they are based. Beware of mobile phones or redirector numbers!)
- "your loan " (Beware of fake loan offers. Real lenders would not normally use free webmail addresses such as Yahoo, nor would they lend to individuals or small businesses in a different country from where they are based. Beware of mobile phones or redirector numbers!)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists free webmail addresses. Use of such addresses is typical for scams. Lotteries, banks and any but the smallest of companies do not normally use such addresses. Criminals use them to anonymously send and receive email at Internet cafes.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Financier; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "Cole D. Anderson" <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 10 Apr 2010 04:23:52 +0800
Greetings To You.
Do you need a Loan. The PALM SERVICES LIMITED offers all types of loans at low
interest rate and with no credit check, we offer Personal loans, Debt
Consolidation Loan, Venture Capital, Business Loan, Education Loan, Home Loan
or "Loan for any reason!".
Our company is based in England as we've been into the financial business for
over 3 years now with a low interest of 3% per month. We give out loan to
people from America, Europe, Asia, New Zealand Australia and Africa within a
maximum of 5 days depending on the seriousness of the applicant. If you are
interested, kindly fill out the Borrower's Loan Application and send
it back to
us for further process.
Borrower Information (Required information fields appear in bold).
Loan Amount Needed:====
As soon as we recieve the application, Then we will process your Loan
application for approval
Name: Mr. Cole D. Anderson
Thanks and Best Regards.
LENDING/PALM FINANCIAL SERVICE LIMITED.