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:
- "the consignment" (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)
- "consignment " (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 united states 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)
- "the diplomat " ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- "liberia" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "David Mary Palati"<firstname.lastname@example.org> (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 7 Mar 2012 21:49:33 -0500
My Name is David Mary Palati Son/Daughter of Late Mr George
Palati.We are From Liberia Our Father was killed by some rebels during
the war Crisis in Liberia.So we ran to Ghana for our security.My
consignment contains $14 million United States dollars and some
quantity of gold,which I cannot specify.
After clearing the consignment from the Airport,Dr.Richard
Kalusi(DIPLOMAT) called Mr.Womack Hardee to tell himthe description to
is house for the delivery,but is House Helper answered the call and
told Mr.Richard Kalusithat Mr.Womack Hardee hard a fatal car accident
which lead to his death.
Please,my sister and I seek for you to stand as our Beneficiary/God
Loving Parent to get in contact with the Diplomat so that he can
deliver the Consignment to you.Please try and get back to me through
Thanks and God bless you
David Mary Palati