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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "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)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
From: Jeff Chang <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 20 Mar 2014 16:47:01 +0200
Subject: Re: Inquiry
I am Mr.Jeffery Chang. I work with HSBC Bank.My colleagues and I are
conducting a standard process investigation involving my client who
shares the same Last name with you, and also the circumstances
surrounding the domiciled estate made with our bank. Our client as the
subject matter died intestate with his only daughter and nominated no
next of kin to inherit this Funds
valued at USD$18 Million Dollars. The essence of this communication
with you is that you kindly assist me on three questions:
1-Are you aware of any relative/relation having the same surname,
whose great grand parents emigrated from your country a long time ago?
2-Are you aware of any investment with HSBC Bank of substantial value
made by such an individual with the same last name as yours?
3-Being the account/portfolio manager to the deceased would you be
able to receive this funds contrary to the above questions if we
legally present you to our bank, with our official capability,
providing all legal backup documentations beyond all reasonable doubt,
to assume status of a heir to the deceased as a relative, based on
your same last name?
It is important that you inform me of your interest on this matter
that we may come to an understanding as a team to put an end to this
Do respond with the following details,So an official of the Bank will
contact you and discuss better with you. :
1. Name :
2. Phone Number :
3. Country :
I await your response