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)
- "cheque " (Beware of any scheme that involves cashing checks or money orders and then wiring a portion of the funds somewhere - you'll be liable for the entire amount if the checks or money orders turn out to be fake, even after you have received and forwarded cash. If it's a lottery prize, remember that real lotteries do not pay large prizes by check. They wire the money directly to your bank account and you do not pay for that. Many scammers promise a large check only in order to then demand payment of courier fees for a fake courier service. )
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- This email message is a "New Partner from Paraguay" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Prof. Raj Deepark"<email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 22 Jul 2011 04:19:14 -0700
Subject: Now contact my P/A in India
Longest time, i hope all is well with you together with your family,if so glory be to GOD almighty. Well,Sorry to hear this news and understand that the fault is not from me.
I'm happy to inform you about my success in getting those funds transferred under the cooperation of a new partner from South Korea. Presently i'm in South Korea for investment projects with my own share of the total sum. Meanwhile,i didn't forget your past efforts and attempts to assist me in transferring those funds despite that it failed us some how.
Now contact my P/A in India
His name is Mr Kumar Sanjit
His email address below:( firstname.lastname@example.org )
Ask him to send you the total sum of $2,500.000.00 in draft cheque which i kept for your compensation for all the past efforts and attempts to assist me in this matter. I appreciated your efforts at that time very much although it didn't come to fruitful. So feel free and get in touched with my secretary Mr Kumar Sanjit and instruct him where to send the amount to you.Send to him your full data on where to receive the cheque such as
Your Full Name:...........
Please do let me know immediately you receive it so that we can share the joy after all the sufferring at that time. In the moment, I'm very busy here because of the investment projects which me and my new partner are having at hand.
Finally, remember that I had forwarded instruction to the secretary on your behalf to receive that draft so feel free to get in touch with Mr Kumar Sanjit, he will send the amount to you without any delay as i instructed him.
Prof. Raj Deepark
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