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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- 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 (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Ms.Rose Anderson" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 27 Aug 2011 03:19:43 +0200
Subject: STATUS TRACKING!!!
Hello,My name is Rose Anderson; I work with the Status Tracking , a consulting Firm in London , UK .
We are conducting a standard process investigation involving a client who shares the same name with you
and also the circumstances surrounding investments made by this client at HSBC Bank Plc.
The HSBC Private Banking client died intestate and nominated no next of kin to inherit the title over
the investments made with HSBC Bank Plc. The essence of this communication with you is to request that
you provide us information on three issues:
1-Are you aware of any relative/relation having the same surname, whose last known contact address was Madrid , Spain ?
2-Are you aware of any investment of considerable value made by such a person at the HSBC Bank Plc.?
3-Can you establish beyond reasonable doubt your eligibility to assume status of next of kin to the deceased?
It is pertinent that you inform us ASAP whether or not you are familiar with this personality that we may put
an end to this communication with you and our inquiries surrounding this personality.
You must appreciate that we are constrained from providing you with more detailed information at this point.
PLEASE RESPOND BACK TO MY PRIVATE AND DIRECT EMAIL ADDRESS;(email@example.com)
as soon as possible to afford us the opportunity to close this investigation.
Thank you for accommodating our enquiry.
for: HSBC Private Clients.
This is a confidential message from Status Tracking.