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:
- "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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "WORLD BANK( DEBT RECONCILIATION)" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 17 Jul 2010 00:48:39 -0700
Subject: YOUR OVER DUE PAYMENT HAS BEEN APPROVED
ATTENTION : HONORABLE BENEFICIARY
DEAR SIR / MADAM
THIS IS TO OFFICIALLY INFORM YOU THAT WE HAVE VERIFIED YOUR INHERITANCE FILE AND FOUND OUT REASONS WHY YOU HAVE NOT RECEIVED YOUR PAYMENT; YOU HAVE NOT FULFILLED THE OBLIGATIONS GIVEN TO YOU IN RESPECT OF YOUR OVER DUE PAYMENT.
SECONDLY WE HAVE BEEN INFORMED THAT YOU ARE STILL DEALING WITH NONE OFFICIALS OF THE BANK (DECEDENTS), ON ATTEMPT TO SECURE THE RELEASE OF THE FUND TO YOU. WE WISH TO ADVISE YOU THAT SUCH AN ILLEGAL ACT SHOULD STOP IF YOU WISH TO RECEIVE YOUR PAYMENT. WE HAVE BEEN NOTIFIED BY THE PRESIDENCY FOR THE IMMEDIATE RELEASE / PAYMENT OF ALL OVER DUE FUND, AND A LASTING SOLUTION IS ON GROUND FOR IMPLEMENTATION.
THE ACCREDITED PAYING FINANCE HOUSE WILL SEND YOU A PAYMENT OPTION WHICH YOU WILL CHOOSE FOR THE PAYMENT OF YOUR FUND, SEND THE FOLLOWING REQUESTED INFORMATION BELOW TO THEM IN OTHER TO PROCEED ON YOUR FUND RELEASE IMMEDIATELY:
1. FULL NAME-----------------------
2. PHONE AND FAX NUMBER----------------
3. ADDRESS WEHRE YOU WANT BANK INSTRUCTMENT TO BE SEND (P.O BOX NOT ACCEPTABLE) ----------
4. YOUR AGE AND CURRENT OCCUPATION---------------
5. A COPY OF YOUR IDENTIFICATION-----------------
HOWEVER, KINDLY FIND BELOW THE CONTACT OF THE ACCREDITED PAYING FINANCE HOUSE:
DR. KENNETH D. TAFIDAH
DIRECTOR PAYMENT PROCESSING UNITE (STANDERD CHARTERED BANK)
THE ACCREDITED PAYING FINANCE HOUSE HAS BEEN MANDATED TO PAY OUT
$500,000.00UDS TO EACH BENEFICIARY AS PART PAYMENT FOR THIS FISCAL YEAR 2010. ALSO FOR YOUR INFORMATION, YOU HAVE TO STOP FURTHER COMMUNICATION WITH ANY OTHER PERSON(S) OR OFFICE(s) TO AVOID ANY HITCH IN RECEIVING YOUR OVER DUE PAYMENT. THIS IS THE ACCEPTANCE CODE (ODPF/NGN/06/2010) WHICH YOU HAVE TO QUOTE ON ANY OF YOUR MAIL TO THE PAYING FINANCE HOUSE.
WORLD BANK GROUP NG