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.
- 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 (Hotmail, United Kingdom; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "williamsoffner" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 2010 06:14:27 +0200
Subject: Get back to me
ENGLAND SUBSEA OIL COMPANY (ESOC).
TITLE: PRODUCTION SHARING CONTRACT
CONTRACT ID: PSC/JV/ESOC 01145-06
From;Desk of Contract Managing Director Subsea Oil Company:
Engr. William C. Offner !!
Greetings to you,
I am the above named person ,the Contract Managing Director of Subsea Oil Company. I am sorry for the inconvinences my mail might have cause you, although we havent had any correspondant before this mail, but i intend to do with who so ever it might concerned.
However I wish to bring to your notice my interest with your assistance on this great business opportunity,sometime last year ,our refinery was generaly serviced and many other contracts where also awarded in the oil sector after an out break of fire.
There was assistance from the World Bank, I.M.F and other Financial Institutions for the replacement of the damaged equipment and the refinery as a whole .During this period, a lot of contract where awarded to so many international contractors. All the original contractors has just received their final phase of their payment, leaving a total sum of ?7.5 million GB Pounds floating in th files of Federal Ministry Of Finance unclaimed, this is a result of the over invoice i did during the award of the contract. this contract has been certified okay;
This sum of the ?7.5 million (Seventeen-Five Million GB Pounds ) i will like to transfer to your account now, what i want you to do, is to provied me your full name, address and your private telephone number. as the cuntract managing director. i will prepare all the document with your name as sum contractor who did this job. And the money will be transfered in your name .In your account. for your involvement in this transaction i will offer you 30% of the total money ;10% set aside for international and local expencess and 60% for me and my colleagues.
Moreover, I will come over to meet with you a day or two days before the arrival of the money in your account to take care of my share after you have taking your commission of 30% .if you will be of assistance to see that this money transferred through your account, and i am assuring you that this business is 100% regitmate assured and legal assurance free risk, for your information if you want more details of this business or you want to be absolute sure of this, you are kindly and highly expected for the round table talk thanks.
I wait in anticipation of your co-operation in reply..(email@example.com)
Eng. William C. Offner
The Contract Managing Director Of Subsea Oil Company.