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.
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- 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: Terry Mark <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 29 Jul 2010 23:19:47 +0800 (SGT)
Subject: Dear partner,
Please, I want to introduce myself and this business opportunity to you.
My name is Mr Terry Mark, a bank accountant,I will need your
assistance in this business transaction.I would like you to stand as the
next of kin to my deceased customer,Mr David Clemetson, who died in a
plane crash in January 31st 2000 plane crash.
He was a wealthy medical doctor who made a deposit of $17Million with our
bank.He died without any registered next of kin and as such the funds now
have an open beneficiary mandate. If you are interested please do let me
have your private telephone number so that I can give
you comprehensive details on what we are to do.
Send me the following information:
1. Your Name in Full:
2. Your Address:
3. Your Occupation:
4. Your Nationality:
5. Your City
6. Your Mobile number:
7. Your Age:
8. Your Gender:
I urgently hope to get your response as soon as possible.
lreply to my private email:(firstname.lastname@example.org)
Mr Terry Mark.