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:
- "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)
- "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)
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (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!
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
- +447031844379 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
Fraud email example:
From: "Chevron Texaco Oil and Gas Company" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 6 Aug 2011 15:41:08 +0100
Subject: YOU WON
Chevron Texaco Oil and Gas Company.
Chevron House,1 Westferry Circus
Canary Wharf London
E14 4HA (United Kingdom DISTRICT)
Our Reference: CHT 2011/19513-10.
Our Batch: 24/00319/CHT
Dear Lucky Winner,
This is to inform you that, You have won a prize Amount of
$500,000.00(Five Hundred Thousand United States Dollars) for the
Yearly Email Lottery promotion which is organized by Chevron
Texaco Oil and Gas Company.
Your Email was selected by the Microsoft Corporation which Always
Supplied this Company With Fifty Thousand Email Addresses Of
Active Internet Users Yearly and sponsors of which include
adidas,FujiFilm,Gillette,Emirates Air, Toshiba, Mcdonalds and a host
of others. Your Email Address Was Submitted as One Of the Active
Internet Users For the Year 2010. After Email Address are Been
Submitted to Us For the Random Selection By Microsoft
Corporation,we only select five people as our winners, through
electronic balloting System without the winner applying.
These are your identification numbers:
Ticket Number: 07911425896/2000
Serial Number: 3872/506
To begin the processing of your prize you are to contact the
remittance department with the email address provided below
through our accredited Prize Transfer agents as stated below via
Contact Person: Mr. James Robinson
Direct Phone Number: +447031844379
1. full Name:...........
On behalf of the Chevron Texaco Oil and Gas Company, we say a
With Best Regards
Mrs. Jane Andrew
For the Chief Executive Officer (CEO),
Chevron Texaco Oil and Gas Company London, United Kingdom.
@ Copyright @ 2011 Chevron Texaco Oil And Gas Lottery.