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:
- "into your nominated bank account" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "million dollars" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Michael Bisi." <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Nov 2011 00:05:02 +0800 (SGT)
Subject: Urgently respond
IBTC Chartered Bank Plc
I.B.T.C. Place,Walter Carrington Crescent
Victoria Island,Lagos State
OUR REF: Ibtc/FGN/08
Thanks for your email,I wish to tell you that yes. that your fund is here in our bank,Mr.Jonathan White transfer your fund here, and he ask us to transfer the fund of $7.5million dollars to you as the true beneficiary of the Fund, So my dear you are advice to send us your personal and banking details, to enable us the transfer of your Fund commence action into your account immediately, to enable transfer your fund in to your own bank account.
Here is the information we need from you to do the transfer.
DATE OF BIRTH:
SWIFT CODE NO:
COUNTRY OF RESIDENCE:
COMPANY NAME IF ANY:
A COPY OF YOUR DRIVERS LICENSE / INTERNATIONAL PASSPORT:
As we wait to hear from you today, to enable us transfer your Fund into your nominated Bank Account.
Mr. Michael Bisi.