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.
- 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.
- +447024067752 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
Fraud email example:
From: "FROM: DR. PETER McWEALTH" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 30 Oct 2009 03:01:52 +0100
Subject: FROM WORLD FUND DISCOVERY MANAGEMENT AND PAYMENT BUREAU.
FROM: DR. PETER McWEALTH
DIRECTOR: WORLD FUND DISCOVERY MANAGEMENT AND PAYMENT BUREAU.
This letter is from World Fund Discovery Management And Payment Bureau newly invented by the World Financial Service Authority United States Of America/United Kingdom
This body was set up to discover an outstanding unpaid fund being owned to Governments or Individuals all over the world through Contract Payment, Inheritance and Lottery Winning Prize Awards.
It will interest you to know that we have discovered an outstanding unpaid/ unclaimed sum of money in favor of your name and a mandate has been given to this body World Fund Discovery Management And Payment Bureau to ensure that this fund gets to you without any delay.
Note that a special payment arrangement has been made to deliver this fund to you through diplomatic means of payment or Alternatively come in person to any of our payment Offices in Europe, America or Asia
You are advised to furnish this office with your contact information to enable us open up communication with you regarding the release of your fund
Your Full Name: _________________________
Your Complete Address: ______________________
Your Private Email Address:_______________________
Name of City of Residence: ____________________
Date of Birth (Day/Month/Year): ____________________
Direct Telephone Number:_____________________
Fax Number: ____________________________________
Dr. Peter McWealth