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:
- "diplomatic courier" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- "courier service" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "CAPTAIN HARRY BENT" <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2011 10:02:03 -0800
Subject: FROM CAPTAIN HARRY BENT
I will like to confide in you as regards to a business proposal i would want us to work together like blood relations. I am a war veteran with the United Nations troop in Afghanistan, on war against terrorism. I served in the 1st Armored Division in Kabul.
Based on the United States legislative and executive decision for withdrawing troops from Afghanistan, I have been redeployed to come and work in your country on the platform of North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) soon. Our mission is to help beef up terrorist targeted States.
On the other hand, i would like to inform you that i have in my possession the sum of 16.2 million U.S. dollars. Which i made from crude oil here in Afghanistan. I deposited this money with a Red Cross agent informing him that i will contact the real owner of the money. It is under my power to approve who is eligible for this money.
I would invest the money in your country as soon as you agree to keep this fund safe in your country for business and other investment purposes through you, but you will advise me on that because i am not a business culture person. If you accept,i will move the fund to you, where you will be the beneficiary, because i am a uniformed person and i can not parade such an amount, so i need to present someone as the recipient.I have 100% authentic means of transferring the money through diplomatic courier Service to you.
I just need your acceptance, and everything is done. Please, if you are interested in this transaction, i will give you the complete details you need for us to implement this transaction successfully. I decided to contact someone i could trust and real and not imaginary, and that is why i contacted you.
I think i can trust you, where we are now we can only communicate through our military facilities, communication is secured, so nobody can monitor our e-mails, then i can explain in details to you. I will only reach you by e-mail, because our Calls might be monitored, i have to be sure, i have to deal with someone i could trust. If you are interested, please get back to me with the details below.If you are not interested, do not respond to this e-mail and delete this Message if no response after 3 days, i will then search for someone else.
I wait for your contact information details, so that we can proceed. In less than 4 days the box should be in your possession, and i will come for my money. I will give you 30% of the total money as a compensation for your sincere and trustworthy help and 70% for me. I hope i have been fair to this deal. Get back to me with your full information:
1 - Your full names:
2 - Your direct telephone and fax numbers:
3 - Your address:
4 - Your marital status:
5 Your Age:
6 - Your Occupation
7 - Do you have your own business or company?
Ctp Harry Bent