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:
- "from the desk of" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "cotonou" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- "email@example.com" (this email address looks like addresses used in "ATM SWIFT card" scams)
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (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.
Fraud email example:
From: Department of ATM card <office.@castle.ocn.ne.jp>
Reply-To: Department of ATM card <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 13 Oct 2018 18:13:52 +0900 (JST)
Subject: From the Desk Of Mr.Johnson Solomon
From the Desk Of Mr.Johnson Solomon
Headquarter: West African Benin Republic /Cotonou
Founded : 1985 / 2365, Boulevard du Mono
ADDRESS : Rue du Governor BAYOL - Cotonou 01 BP 1280 Cotonou
Hello Beneficiary, Please i need to know what the problem is have you abandon your fund or you still want to receive it ??? you should get back to me immediately because we have been trying to reach out to you severally in respect to your scam compensation funds worth $850,000.00 thousand provided by the federal government powered by the world bank group , but due to unclassified reasons our mails to you have been bounced and our server alerted error on sending them to you i just hope this last message gets to you on time because there is an emergency here!
We got an email from Mrs. kleen Stillman of Kemuning Ray Street NO.8,Tomang. Jakarta,Indonesia in respect of your Funds claiming to be your sister and that you are seriously ill, now due to the fact that we could not get access to you despite all odds, personally i am suspecting something fishy that is why am writing this email to you once again to confirm that you authorize her to contact us in respect of your Funds please you are alerted to reply urgent so that if she is not from you we will have her tracked down and Arrested by POLICE!
so do reconfirm to this OFFICE as a matter of urgency if this woman is from you or not so that this Office will not beheld responsible for releasing your ATM card to the wrong person also be inform that your funds in Question has already being converted into ATM card for all we get to do is have the ATM card mail to you by the post services so please if this woman is not from you kindly forward your below details to us on email (firstname.lastname@example.org) for confirmation.
Your Full Name..................................
Direct Phone Number.............................
i wait for your urgent attention in regard to the above message.
Mr. Johnson Solomon
Director ATM department