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:
- 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:
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "barr." (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- 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.
- email@example.com (Rocketmail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
- khan payment officer: barr. carmen khan. email: firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com tel: +234.705.4331551 (Rocketmail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "VM Motori S.p.A. Company" <YaxinZhaqong@vmmotori.it>
Date: Sun, 1 Jan 2012 06:19:37 -0300 (CLST)
Subject: Happy New Year From VM Motori S.p.A. Company
VM Motori S.p.A. Company
Via Ferrarese, 29 Italy
44042 CENTO (FE)
Vat. Number 01325610382
Dear E-mail User,
This is to immediately inform you that your email address with MICROS
ID AXN-20Z11-ZHE-XHN-S70X-YEX5 has won $945,000 and a brand new 2011
range rover SUV from the VM MOTORI S.p.A. COMPANY 2012 promotion.
Please reconfirm your status by filling the form below to Our Payment
Officer: Barr. Carmen Khan Via our representative Attorney Office in
DATE OF BIRTH:
MODE OF CLAIMS
1. Your Funds by Bank Transfer
2. Your brand new 2010 range rover SUV by Delivery Company
Information and Payment Bureau:
Nigeria Representative Office: Desk Of Barrister Carmen Khan
Payment Officer: Barr. Carmen Khan.
Mrs Yaxin Zhaqong (Announcer)©