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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- 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.
- +447024077025 (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 (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Metropolitan Safe Deposits Plc" (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 22 Nov 2009 23:42:50 +0200
Subject: RE: NOTIFICATION OF YOUR PAYMENT
Metropolitan Safe Deposits Plc
RE: NOTIFICATION OF YOUR PAYMENT
From:Mr Paul Anderson
Remittance Manager Metropolitan Safe Deposits Plc
This is to officially inform you that we have verified your contract file presently on my desk, and I found out that you have not received your
payment.due to necessary Verifications & Procedures.
After the board meeting held at our headquarters, we have resolved in finding a solution to the issue, and as you may know, we have arranged your payment
through our SWIFT CARD PAYMENT CENTER in Europe, America,Africa and Asia Pacific, which is the
instruction given by the Board of Managers. And this instruction is ask to be carried out with immediate effect.
This card center will send you an ATM CARD which you will use to withdraw your money on any ATM MACHINE in any part of the world, but the maximum on card is
($41,000.00) Thousand Dollars. So, if you like to receive your fund this way get back with required details
(1) Full Name as wanted on Card:
(2) Address:(No P.O.Box)
(3) Phone And Fax Number:
(4) Date Of Birth:
(5) Occupation :
SEND THE ABOVE INFORMATION TO : Paul.email@example.com
We shall be expecting to receive your information . On this regards, do not hesitate to contact me for more details and direction, and also please do update
me with any new development.
Thanks for your co-operation.
Remittance Manager Metropolitan Safe Deposits Plc.
Note: Your code shall be (CARD 4511:2009) Make this code your reference number when contacting us.