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 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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "James Rawlings" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 25 Feb 2014 08:37:02 -0500
Subject: Compliments of the day
I am Doctor James Rawlings, I decided to contact you directly for an investment with you in my company. Our company is into production of Pharmaceutical products and Animal Vaccines.
There are some materials that my company needs from India for research and development of its anti HIV therapy, Hypertension, Parkinson, Disease, Rest legs syndrome, stroke. And for production of film and Sugar Coated Tablets, all sizes of hard Shell Capsules, Bulk Powders, Ointments and small to large scale Creams and Liquids production.
We have been purchasing the materials from Kenya in Africa but it is very scarce over there now, but I got the contact of a dealer of this same product in India who is selling good quality product. But I am having problem with the owner of the products because of one Mr. Greg Meyer whom introduced them to me. He has betrayed me in our first business and now I am having a doubt about honesty of him, that is why I contacted you to stand as the real and major dealer of the said material and you will be dealing directly with the MD of my company.
This Message is personally for you alone. Please I request it to be treated as such only.
Hope you are a good and honest person to be my business partner. If interested please respond via email: firstname.lastname@example.org, I will then forward you more details on how you are going to handle this business transaction without misunderstanding. I am currently in the United States of America and will be glad to hear from you.
Please take out a moment of your very busy schedule to respond back for more details.
Tel : 516 858-5732
Fax :516 430 5014