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.
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
Fraud email example:
From: "HENRY MURRAY" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 28 Dec 2011 12:08:08 +0100
Subject: URGENT LEGAL MATTER
I am Henry Murray, an attorney at law. I am contacting you to assist in distributing the fund left behind by my late client before it is confiscated or declared unserviceable by the bank.
This will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the law.
Waiting to hear from you so we can proceed without delay.
P.s: Reply me via email@example.com
Henry Murray (ESQ)
Henry Murray & Associates
Level 38, Menara Upper Tower
165 Jalan Ampang 50450
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Tel: +601- 6908 5941