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:
- 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:
- "offshore account" (Banks mentioned in 419 scams are always fake (real banks don't communicate using mobile phones or free webmail addresses))
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr Ian Davies" <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 20 Apr 2011 07:52:44 -0500 (COT)
I am Ian Davies ;an accredited vendor of Alliot Groups, a subsidiary firm of
Emirates International Holding (EIH); A private equity funds holding company
that focuses on hedge funds.
I have contacted you in the hope that you can be my associate by accepting to
stand as the legal recipient to a Fixed-Income deposit, valued at 25MUSD by
providing an International Offshore account to clear the funds.
Once I file your details as the new recipient to the funds, the funds will be
approved through the AUTOMATED CLEARING HOUSE (ACH) - A facility used by
financial institutions to distribute electronic debit and credit entries
accounts and therefore settles such entries. Under the automated clearing
upon approval of your details as the new recipient; a Credit advice will be
issued in your favor and the funds will clear in your account within three
banking days. I am willing to give you 40% which is 10MUSD as your commission
out of the 25MUSD for your assistance in providing an International Offshore
account to clear the funds.
I am confident you will be honest enough to adhere to our agreed
spite of the 25MUSD coming through your account. I will need you to
your legal names address and phone to file your details on the fund as the
recipient in this first Quater of the financial fiscal year 2011.
Looking forward to working with you.
Alliot Groups PS