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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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:
- "hundred thousand united states dollars" (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)
- ",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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists free webmail addresses. Use of such addresses is typical for scams. Lotteries, banks and any but the smallest of companies do not normally use such addresses. Criminals use them to anonymously send and receive email at Internet cafes.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "CLIFFORD EASWOOD" (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 24 Jul 2011 20:33:28 +0800
Funds For Investment And Management I am facilitating for a private investor who has interest to do business relative to long term investments in your Company or Country. The area of interest is Health, Real Estate, Crude-Oil, Farm, Services and construction or any business of your choice. You will be required to: . Receive the funds in cash into a business/private bank account.
. Invest and Manage the funds in the specified areas of investment.
Nyong David (10/23/2009 5:53:48 PM): The total sum available for investment is FIFTEEN MILLION, FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND UNITED STATES DOLLARS ( USD$15,500,000..00 ) . My diseased client who pass by mortor accident,for this reason i am willing to pay 10% as participation fee for your role as the receiver partner to the funds and a subsequent 10% "Management Commission"
for your advised investment services. Absolute confidentiality and professionalism is required in the handling of this funds and subsequent investments. You may as well send me your Cell phone numbers so to ease communication. I look forward to your swift response.. Sincerely Yours. Clifford Eastwood email@example.com