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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "hundred thousand united state dollars" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "00,000.00" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
Date: Mon, 19 Apr 2010 13:48:06 +0200
HANG SENG BANK LTD
83, Des Voeux Road,
My name is Patrick K W Chan, I work with HANG SENG BANK, HONG KONG. I have a Business Transaction of Twenty four million four hundred thousand united state dollars($24,400,000.00) for you to handle with me from my bank. I will need you to assist me in executing this Business from Hong Kong to your country. I need to know if you will be able to handle this with me before I explain to you in full details ? Should you be interested please send me your Full Names, Private Phone/Fax Numbers and your Current Residential Address and finally after that I shall provide you with more details of this Business Transaction.
Patrick K. W. Chan.
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