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:
- "central bank of nigeria" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- 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.
- +447045739790 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "Rev Collins Adams" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 19 Oct 2009 06:16:04 -0700
Subject: Attention: The Beneficiary (Compensation)
United Nations Compensation Committee
Attention: The Beneficiary,
SCAMMED VICTIM/ $2.5million COMPENSATION-REF/PAYMENTS CODE: 07744 We are delegated from the United Nations to Bank of American to pay 100 Nigerian/World 419 scam victims $2.5million each, you are listed and approved for this payments as one of the scammed victims, get back to us as soon as possible for the immediate payments of your $2.5million compensations funds.
On this faithful recommendations, I want you to know that during the last United Nations meetings held at New York NY in USA with Barack Obama New Elected United States Of American President, it was alarmed so much by the rest of the world in the meetings on the lose of funds by various foreigners to the scams artists operating in syndicates all over the world today, in other to retain the good image of the country, the president of the Country is now paying 100 victims of this operators $2.5million each, Due to the corrupt and inefficient banking systems in Nigeria, the payments are to be made paid by UN payment center in London UK. under funding assistance by the Central Bank of Nigeria According to the number of applicants at hand, 88 beneficiaries has been paid so far, half of the victims are from the United States and Asia, we still have 12 left to be paid the compensations of $2.5million each only.
For more vital information, please visit http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2003/ik344.doc.htm
Your particulars was mentioned by one of the syndicates who was arrested in Nigeria as one of their victims of the operations, you are hereby warned not to communicate or duplicate this message to him for any reason for whatsoever, the US/FBI secret service is already on trace of the criminal. For more vital information. You are also advised to stop further communication with anyone for now until after your payment has been made to you.
You will receive your compensations payments via a BANK DRAFT or ATM CARD PAYMENTS and not a WIRE TRANSFERS; you need to indicate your preferred choice in your response to this email.
I shall feed you with further information, Once I hear from you. Reply through my alternative email address below:( email@example.com ) or call me on this number (+44-704-573-9790)
United Nations Secretary-General.
Mr. Ban Ki-moon.
Rev. Father Collins Adams
De-facto Chief Compensation Officer
United Nations Compensation Committee
United Nations Anti-fraud Committee