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:
- "activation fee" (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. )
- "required fee " (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. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Anthony Perez." (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 24 Jul 2012 16:36:50 +0300
Subject: GRAET QUEEN ELIZABETH FOUNDATION
QUEEN ELIZABETH FOUNDATION,
COVE 2 HOWARD ST. NEW LONDON, CT 06320
UNITED KINGDOM, LONDON
In Honor of Queen Elizabeth the Great, the European Union Foundation (E.U.F.) and the African Union Foundation (A.U.F.) would love to inform You that in honor of her majesty Queen Elizabeth. you have been nominated
As a bonafide beneficiary to the sum of GBP650, 000.00(Six Hundred and Fifty Thousand Great British Pounds).
The Queen Elizabeth foundation is a body or organization established to Enrich the poor, needy, retired, sick, lesspriviledge and also establishing And enriching personal individuals with skills to eradicate poverty in
USA, Europe, Asia and Africa and also to compensate all victims of scam and reimburse them back for there looses.
In accordance to the above mentioned money, be informed that this is not Associated with any form of lottery.
Please reconfirm your information's in our custody:
Your Full Names:
Country Of Residence:
Furthermore, your money would be remitted to you via ONLINE BANKING (SELF TRANSFER) into your account.
Details of ONLINE BANKING TRANSFER (your login) would be issued to you Upon response to this email, all you need to do is ensure you activate Youre Online Banking Account with the sum of $US150 and all necessary Details would be issued to you to enable you transfer your funds Online
Please do bear In mind I do repeat you would be required an account activation fee of $US150 if you know you can't come up with the required fee please do disregard this EMAIL...
Once you activate your account these organization assures you that no Further fee would be required of you for whatever, because we are registered to W.B and I.M.F monetary unit.
Once more, Congratulation.
Mr. Anthony Perez.
Queen Elizabeth Foundation