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:
- "mtcn" (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "time is not on our side" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "cotonou" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
Fraud email example:
From: REV WILLIAMS BENSON <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 29 Oct 2011 22:30:08 +0800 (SGT)
Subject: MERCIES OF THE LORD ARE WITH YOU.
Dear Child of God.
Mercies of the lord are with you.
In the name of the father and of the son and of the Holy Spirit it shall be well with you now and forever moreâ¦ (Amen).
June, next month is July and I am very sure I have done a lot in regards to this transaction we both you and I have invested time, energy and best in this I donât want to see this transaction wash away because time is not on our side at this precious moment.
These are the major things that kill the transaction 1- silence 2- I donât have money and lastly: lack of trust.
1- Silence : In most cases I send you email (updates) in regards to the transaction and you donât reply me this really makes me feel like I am not important or a human being , I am a creation of God and so far I have dedicated my time for your advantage because the transaction ( Parcel/your funds) are all yourâs.
I believe in goods spirits and good life because you will be at peace so I like making good impact.
2- I donât have money: I am not sure of your pocket rate and I donât know your worth but I thank God for one thing you can only be truthful to yourself only, I believe there is miracle in life and only your personal faith and prayers works if God do good for you the devil might still ask that good should test his/her so he can be sure, the devil test cannot overcome a child of God if he / she has faith.
Trust yourself well enough is a good thing but in case that you donât give good response the transaction seems to look rough and then you keep having negative thought about it. This transaction is real and the fee is highly needed this week.
Â Lack of trust is major and I know this as a final reason that makes transaction not work, though bad people and evil doers still life here on earth but I give you my words that qualifies me as a man I cannot never take yourâs and add to mine for self fantasy or enjoyment , please do you think I donât read or see enough that can happen to some that does that let say her on earth what can still happen after death.
Pleaseâ¦ Go and send the money ASAP. As in as soon as you can give me vital info in regards to the fee as in it is highly and cannot take too long for you to do this, so I am not forcing you and I am pleading with âYOUâ. So kindly act fast and REPLY ASAP... SOON.
I await your swift response today.
I await the MTCN.
here is the information you will use to send the money below
Receiver name â¦â¦â¦. Miracle Nwekwu
Country â¦â¦..Â Â Â Â BÃ©nin Repiblic
City â¦â¦â¦â¦ Cotonou
Test questionâ¦â¦â¦God is our Â
Test answer â¦â¦â¦.Father
Amountâ¦â¦â¦â¦â¦.. $87.00 only
Best Wish / Regards,
thank youÂ Rev Williams Benson
call number +229-6656-7551