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:
- "million united state dollars" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "00,000.00" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "economic and financial crimes commission" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- "(efcc)" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Lamorde" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 18 Aug 2012 18:10:31 +0700
Subject: Good message for you
l am Mr. Ibrahim Lamorde the group Charmain of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission
(EFCC) OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA. We came across your email address while going through the list of people that have been scammed in the past few years.
Thus we have so far recovered (782 Million United State Dollars) from scammers in africa,asia and europe.
The trustees and board of directors in this office has decided to compensate all scammed victims financially with the sum of $500,000.00 from the above recovered funds without any delay and stress.
I will use this opportunity to let you know that the processing of your compensation award of $500,000.00 will be handle by the chairman's office only.
Therefore,do furnish this office with the information bellow to enable us commence with the preparation and documentation of the compensation award funds.
1) Full name
2) mailing Address
Please note that you are only to contact us if you have agreed with the content of this message. It is the time you forget about your sadness and face joy and happiness in your life. In God we trust.
Mr. Ibrahim Lamorde
Economic and Financial Crimes Commission