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:
- "hundred thousand united states 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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
Fraud email example:
From: "sa" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 29 Jan 2011 18:57:56 +0200
Subject: asigned With:::
THIS IS AN OFFICIAL NOTICE:
I am Mr Greg John,Auditing Manager Gaurantee Trust Bank an institution that arranges untraceable asset management and safekeeping of special and valuable packages and baggage in trust for reputable clients that are honest and trustworthy.We wish to inform you of the availability of a safe deposit box with our Security firm for which you have been listed as the beneficiary,a benefactor who is a citizen of your country and whose identity can not be disclosed because of the Non Circumvention and Non Disclosure Agreement that was signed with the said benefactor when the safe deposit box was being deposited, made you the beneficiary of a box which contains some amount of money and instructed clearly that you should only be notified of its availability after the expiration of the maturity date and that time has already elapsed,that is why you are being contacted.
The Non Circumvention and Non Disclosure Agreement signed with the benefactor mandates us to fully divulge and disclose the benefactor's identity one month
after you, the beneficiary,has confirmed receipt of the funds.The funds in the safe deposit box totals $5.5M (Five million five hundred thousand United States Dollars) and we confirm that these funds are fully free of any liens,or encumbrances and are clean,clear and of non-criminal origin and are available
in the form of CASH.
As soon as the information is confirmed with that provided by your benefactor,you will be notified immediately with instructions necessary for you to arrange and pick up the safe deposit box from our security company.We at Gaurantee Trust Bank, want to state clearly that our job will be to monitor the claim, give assistance where necessary and also advice you on behalf of your benefactor.
We cannot be directly involved in the claims,you will have to arrange directly with the Security company on the best and safest way for you to pick up your
money as soon as possible. The Requested Information is to ensure that no mistake or error is made and it should be forwarded in the manner stated below:
Your Full Name: ___________________________________
Your Complete Address: ___________________________________
Name of City of Residence: ___________________________________
Direct Telephone Number: ___________________________________
Direct Fax Number: ___________________________________
The Telephone & Fax numbers are very necessary as they will be forwarded to the Security company staff, and forms faxed to you before the funds would be handed over to you so as to ensure that the package is handed over to the right person.
So its mandatory you send your Direct Telephone Number preferably your mobile or Cell Phone number.
Congratulations in advance.
Thank you and I sincerely remain,
MR Greg John,
GAURANTEE TRUST BANK PLC
TELE: +234-808 897-4203