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:
- ",500,000" (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)
- "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)
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- "economic and financial crimes commission" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- "farida waziri" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- "lagos" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- "cotonou" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- 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: "Mrs. Farida Waziri." (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 30 Jan 2011 02:53:25 -0800
Subject: Anti-Fraud Unit.
Nigeria Investigation Department,
4Th Floor Awolowo Road,
Motto: Security Watch
My Name is Mrs. Farida Waziri the new Economic and Financial Crimes Commission chairperson in Nigeria . I have tried my best so far to make sure you receive your outstanding payment with the federal government of Nigeria Benin Republic Cotonou, Ghana and others, but I discovered you prefer dealing with crooks and sending your hard earned money to them who have been using my name and our communication code in deceiving you.
I will be ready to help you get your fund if you abide to my instructions to enable me help in delivering your fund as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission principal officer. I strongly know that they will never tell you the truth rather than collecting your hard earned money from you. I have decided with my veto power that you must receive one third of your principle fund to ascertain really who I am. But I will prefer you send a security communication code to me, which we can use in communicating to each other for safety reasons, if you really want to claim this fund without fraudulent problem.
Note: Thousands of fraudsters have been using this method in scamming most foreign creditors, that we have in the payment list here in our office. We use this medium to inform you that any mail that does not come with the new communication code: FW/.ECNG -BFKR-/OSHLJ/ is false. In this case, youre advice not to respond to any mail that does not come with the above communication code for safety purpose.
Our final conclusion was that, the fund should be paid to you via an automated teller machine card (ATM) as it seems, this will be easier and faster for you to receive.
Note; that the amount youre expecting is US$ 10,500,000.00 and it has been approved by the IMF yesterday.
You are advice to email me back via my private emailbox @: email@example.com
Your new communication code: FW/.ECNG -BFKR-/OSHLJ/.
Mrs. Farida Waziri.