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:
- 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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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 (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Hong Leong Bank Malaysia" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 6 Apr 2012 02:57:32 +0800
Subject: Attn: ATM Card Beneficiary.
Hong Leong Bank
No. 110, Jalan Tun Sambanthan,
50470 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan
Attn: ATM Card Beneficiary,
May you remain favored and I pray that this email will find you in good Spirits and of course always in the best of health. Without taking much of your time, my name is Ms. Roselyn Chia Director/Chief Executive of the Hong Leong bank Bank Malaysia.
I wish to use this medium to inform you that your full payment of USD$10.5M (Ten Million Fine Hundred Thousand Dollars) from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has been APPROVED to be released to you via an ATM CARD. But the maximum you can withdraw daily is USD$5,000.00 only.
After the conclusion derived from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the United Nation, we were mandated to send you the ATM CARD and PIN NUMBER which you will use to withdraw the funds in any ATM SERVICE MACHINE in any part of the world, but as I have mentioned earlier, the maximum you can withdraw in a day is USD$5000.00 Only.
You are required to send the below information to us in other for us to dispatch the ATM card to your doorstep.
1. Full Name
2. Home Address
3. Direct Phone Number
4. Current Occupation
5. Age and Sex
We await your immediate response via email our corresponding email (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Ms Roselyn Chia Director
Hong Leong Bank Malaysia