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:
- The following fake company names, fake addresses, non-existent institutions/documents or other details have appeared in scams before:
- "uk national lottery" (can only win this lottery if you bought a ticket)
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "fiduciary agent" (real lotteries do not use a "claim agent" / "fiduciary agent")
- "claims office" (real lotteries do not use a "claim agent" / "fiduciary agent")
- ",000,000" (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 fake lottery scam. Consider the following facts about real lotteries:
- They don't notify winners by email.
- You can't win without first buying a lottery ticket.
- They don't randomly select email addresses to award prizes to.
- They don't use free email accounts (Yahoo, Hotmail, etc) to communicate with you.
- They don't tell you to call a mobile phone number.
- They don't tell you to keep your winnings secret.
- They will never ask a winner to pay any fees to receive a prize!
- 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.
- +447024057778 (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.
- email@example.com (Pisem; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "=?gb2312?B?TG90dGVyeQ==?=" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 23 Oct 2010 19:11:31 +0800
The National Lottery
Liverpool L70 1NL. United Kingdom
(Customer service) NOTIFICATION DESK
Attention: Email Account Holder.
We are pleased to announce you as one of the lucky Winners in the UK NATIONAL LOTTERY draw held on Wednesday 13th October, 2010. All 3 winning addresses were randomly selected from a batch of 5,000,000 international emails. Your Email address emerged alongside 2 others as a 3rd Category winner in this month's draw.
Consequently, you have therefore been approved for a total pay out of 850,000.00 Pounds (Eight Hundred and Fifty Thousand Great Britain pounds Sterling) only
The following particulars are attached to your lotto payment order:
(i) Winning numbers: 1, 4, 5, 9, 11, 14-25
(ii) Serial number: 21-8-1974
(iii) Lotto batch number: FL-101
(iv) Reference number: SBF-404-3
Here are the details required from international winners:
YOUR FULL NAME:
COUNTRY OF RESIDENT:
Please contact the under listed Claims Officer as soon as possible with your details for the immediate release of your Winnings:
UK Lottery Fiduciary Agent:
Name: Mr. Eric Nelson
Tel number: +44 702 405 7778
Fax number: +44 844 774 1821
Once again on behalf of all our staff,
"Do not reply back to the senders address or the source email address, it is sent via computer virtual assistance for response will not be read by Human but computer" Therefore you must contact the fiduciary agent by telephone or email address provided above "
Mrs. Helen Matthew.
UK INTERNATIONAL LOTTERY.
Copyright (c) 1994-2010 The UK Lottery International Promotion Inc.
All rights reserved. Terms of Service -Guideline. 77635 476378 255667460