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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "god fearing " (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- "email@example.com" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs Victory Egobia" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 20 Jul 2010 10:50:18 -0700
Subject: Read My Message
My Dear Friend.
Re-cash of US$4.5M only for investment.
I am Mrs.Victory Egobia,Representative/Consultant to Mrs Cecilia Ibru former Managing Director of Oceanic Bank Plc.
I am mandated by my client (Mrs Cecilia Ibru)to search for a reliable oversea partner who will be interested to assist her receive the above stated fund for investment partnership.
When she was directly in charge of the affairs of the bank, she assisted some key former officials of Nigeria Government then to lodge in sum huge amount of $$$Million. Right now due to the change of Government,she is now been witch hunted by the present Government.She has been arrested and subsequently released and placed on house arrest.
You can view this website for more information:
Hence she needs a God fearing person; non-native of Nigeria to help her secure the us$4.5m for her for future investment.
The investment shall be under your supervision and control pending when this government tenure expires. I want to be very sure of age, your ability to keep secret, your capability to keep fund and your suggestion on the area of choice of investment. These requirements are very important to me. I will call you as soon I receive your reply and your mobile phone number.
Note:The fund is presently lodged with a Security and Finance Company outside Nigeria.
Meanwhile find time to download her website: www.ceciliaibru.com study it and get back to me.
Please be rest assure that this deal must keep to your self even if you are not interested to avoid creating more problem to my client.
I will be looking forward to your candid response via this Email:firstname.lastname@example.org
You can call me on +234-70-8203-8534 for more discussion.