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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "barr." (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Pacific Island" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 3 Mar 2012 15:51:35 -0300
Subject: PLEASE ACCEPT THIS COMPENSATION AND FORGIVE ME.
Its been quite long since we heard from each other. Betrayal they say is the willful slaughter of hope. I have betrayed you my friend from the moment you responded to that email I sent to you some time ago., from that moment you accepted that lotto wining notice and then you sent me your name, address phone and account details.
>From that moment I choose to betray you when you choose to trust me.I diverted the wining to myself.I am so so sorry that you have lost a lot of money to claim this prize.
I am in a poor state of health now and i may have died from cancer before my Son send you this letter,but please accept the Seven hundred and sixty thousand dollars compensation as an attonement for my sin against you.Please contact my legal adviser Barr.charles based in Malaysia because I have given him instructions to deliver this money to you as soon as possible.
You can contact my legal adviser Barr.charles his email [ email@example.com ] just tell him that you are contacting him under instruction from Code:GUUTU992 he will honor my WILL and pay you within Fourth eight hours. Forgive me this is all i ask for.Please send him your I.D,phone and address for verification and payment processing.My spirit will be uplifted once you get this compensation.