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:
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (This email address looks like addresses used in fake loan scams. Be suspicious of any lender who uses a free webmail address or who is based in different country from yourself.)
- "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.
- +447014240362 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Bothroyd Sidwell"<firstname.lastname@example.org> (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 14 May 2011 19:08:30 +0530
Subject: Business Loan and Personal Loan Offer !!!! !!!!!
Business Loan and Personal Loan Offer
My name is Mr. Bothroyd Sidwell, from United Kingdom, I am an individual lender, I give out loans at very cheap and moderate rates, and I am trusted, reliable and dynamic.
Contact us now...Hurry Up and get this Unique Opportunity because we believe loans rendering work in trust and believe in making life better.
Please feel free to contact us on this private email id email@example.com
FILL AND RETURN THE BORROWER'S INFORMATION
4)Date of birth...
7)Next Of Kin:
9)Company name:(if Any )
10)Work address: "
13)Amount Needed As The Loan:
14)Purpose of the loan:
16) Your E-mail address...
Have a wonderful season with us.
We look forward to working with you.
Thanks And God Bless
Mr. Bothroyd Sidwell