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:
- "trunk box" (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)
- "utmost confidentiality" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- "email@example.com" (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.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs Maria Bejes" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 1 Apr 2011 01:11:03 +0100
Subject: My Last Wish to Humanity
Mrs Maria Bejes
25 Harrington Gardens
London SW7 4LH UK
My Last Wish to Humanity
I am Mrs Maria Bejes a dying woman have decided to Will/Donate the sum US$5.200,000.00(Five Million Two Hundred Thousand Dollars) for charities through you for the good work of the Lord and to help the poor, the motherless,the less privileged and widows.Because of the urgency and the enormity of the job to be done I have decided that 40% of this money should be taken by you from the total sum upon the successful release of this fund to you. NB:This money has been packed in a defaced form in a trunk box and tagged Diplomatic Luggage.
The security code to open the trunck is XB3029 and is known to you alone, the diplomats cannot open it as they do not have the code, when they arrive with it they will call you up for the claims through the security firm handling the delivery.
I will appreciate your utmost confidentiality in this matter until the task is accomplished, as I don't want anything that will jeopardize my last wish, due to the fact that I do not want relatives or family members standing on the way of my last wish. If you are ready to carry on this task please,reply to my consultant:Mr.Alex Davis email address: (firstname.lastname@example.org)
God bless you and your family.
Mrs Maria Bejes
PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR FULL NAME, ADDRESS, TELEPHONE/FAX NUMBER
ON YOUR REPLY FOR EASY AND IMMEDIATE COMMUNICATION WITH MY CONSULTANT.#