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:
- "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)
- "email@example.com" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- This email message is a fake lottery scam. Consider the following facts about real lotteries:
- They don't notify winners by email.
- You can't win without first buying a lottery ticket.
- They don't randomly select email addresses to award prizes to.
- They don't use free email accounts (Yahoo, Hotmail, etc) to communicate with you.
- They don't tell you to call a mobile phone number.
- They don't tell you to keep your winnings secret.
- They will never ask a winner to pay any fees to receive a prize!
Fraud email example:
From: "Australian Lottery inc." (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 14 May 2011 10:52:15 +0300
Subject: CONGRATULATIONS!!! Your Winning No Is: GB9702/LPRC
Credit file Ref:ILP/HW 47509/02
We are delighted to inform you of your Mother's Day E-mail Lottery Draw,From the Australian International Lotteries programme.Which is played on an electronic selection of winners using their e-mail addresses.Your email address was attached to ticket number:5706171507056490902-serial number-8741127002.The lucky numbers as follows are 8383-42 bonus number 17,which consequently won the lottery in the second category.
You hereby have been approved for a lump sum payment of $200,000.00 (TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS) AUD payable by cheque.From the total prize pool shared amongst eight lucky winners in this category.
All participant were selected through a computer balloting system drawn from Nine hundred thousand E-mail addresses,ranging from Canada,Australia,United States,Asia,Europe,and the Middle east,as part of our international promotions program which is conducted annually.This Lottery was promoted and sponsored by some multinational companies as part of their social
responsibility to the citizens in the commmunities where they have operational base.
Further more your E-mail falls within our Australian representative office in Melbourne,As indicated in your play coupon and your prize of $200,000.00 AUD will be released to you from our regional branch office here in Melbourne. We hope that with part of your prize,You will participate in our "End of year high stakes" worth $1.3 Million International draw.
HOW TO CLAIM YOUR PRIZE:
Contact our claims department Officer: Dr.Fox
at chase Bank(Chaseonlinenewyork@secretarias.com)
To claim your cash prize...
Please quote your credit file ref:Batch and Winning number which can be found on the top left corner of this notification.Please add your full name, Address and Telephone number to help locate your file easily. For security reasons,we advice all winners to keep this information confidential from the public until your claim is processed and your prize released to you.This is part of our security protocol to avoid double claiming and unwarranted persons taking advantage of this programme by non-participant
or unofficial personnel.(NOTE) all winnings MUST be claimed on or before 5pm 16th of May 2011 otherwise all funds will be returned as Unclaimed and eventually donated to charity organisations.
Congratulations once again on your winnings!!!
(Claims officer)Helen Allen
REPLY TO THE ABOVE MENTIONED EMAIL.