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.
Click here to report a problem with this page.
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:
- "dear sir/madam" (a standard Nigerian greeting phrase)
- "% of every payment" (Beware of any scheme that involves depositing checks or money orders or receiving wire transfers in your bank account and then wiring a portion of the funds somewhere, for a percentage of 5-15% of the total. Such offers are *always* fraudulent and you will be liable for the entire amount when the checks, money orders or wire transfers turn out to be fraudulent. Any money already forwarded comes out of *your* pocket then. )
- This email message is a company representative scam. This type of job offer scam involves the cashing of fake checks and money orders. It could expose you to losses of tens of thousands of dollars as well as to the risk of criminal prosecution and (in some cases) imprisonment.
- 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:
Date: Thu, 7 Jan 2010 12:18:47 -0200 (ARST)
Subject: AGENT NEEDED
Polyplastics Co., Ltd.
JR Shinagawa East Bldg.,
18-1, Konan 2-chome,
REGIONAL PAYMENT RECEIVING AGENT NEEDED
Polyplastics Co., Ltd. manufactures all kinds of specialized extrusion
molded products used in various fields including materials for
construction, heat insulation, anti-pollution facilities, water treatment,
etc.We exports our products to North America,South America,Eastern
Europe,Western Europe and Southeast Asia etc.
We are looking for a payment representative in UK,USA,Canada,and
Mexico.Salary is 10% of every payment you receive on our behalf. All
charges such as tax and transfer charges will be deducted from the
balance 90%. Details of your account is not needed in this transaction.
Note:Even if you have a present job,you can still be part of our business
as your service to us would not disturb with your working hours at all.
If you are interested in this transaction forward your contact information
to my private. email: email@example.com
(2)Full residential or office address:
a. Street number and name:
d. Zip code:
Thanks for your understanding and co-operation.
Polyplastics Co., Ltd.
Este mensaje ha sido analizado por MailScanner
en busca de virus y otros contenidos peligrosos,
y se considera que está limpio.
Ante cualquier duda comuniquese a firstname.lastname@example.org