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:
- "dear sir/madam" (a standard Nigerian greeting phrase)
- "million 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)
- "power of attorney" (with your bank details and a power of attorney form criminals sometimes empty bank accounts)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
- 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 (Kimo; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: Safia Farkash al-Baraasi <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 19 Aug 2011 13:06:43 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: From Safia Farkash al-Baraasi I am the second wife of the Libyan leader
Safia Farkash al-Baraasi I am the second wife of the Libyan leader. We came to know each other in 1971 when Gaddafi was admitted to a hospital where I worked as a nurse.
We got married the same year and have six sons and one daughter.As you may be aware that my husband is presently facing difficulties in Libya as his administration charges in Libya by the rebel, I and my three family members had moved to one of our hiding estate unknown to any body all our documents have be ceased to prevent us from travelling.
Please, presently I and my entire family have what I will called âMY FAMILY LAST RESORT to the tune of U$6.000.000.00 (Six million United States Dollars) and ready to be TRANSFER to you with the hope that you will invest this funds into any good business in your country, pending when the political turmoil is over. Please if you are interested in helping me to receive this money that is presently in an Finance Firm in Uk
After a successful process and transfer of this said money into you, 30% of the total funds will go to you, and my son Alaa will come to your country immediately to start up a business with your assistance so we will be save for raining day.
Â You can found out some of the story on this web bellow:http://www.deccanherald.com/content/144251/libyas-first-lady-owns-airline.html
I shall give you the contact information of the finance firmÂ in Uk when you indicate your interest and he will assist you on any legal issues to change the necessary Documents / Documentation to your NAME and Power of Attorney to secure this fund. I guarantee that this will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the law as it is a 100% risk free venture.
Kindly indicate your interest in assisting my family by providing the basic information such as Full name, Address, Age, occupation and cell number.Please reply to:Â firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks for your service in advance.
Safia Farkash al-Baraasi
Reply to: email@example.comÂ