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.
- The following fake company names, fake addresses, non-existent institutions/documents or other details have appeared in scams before:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "inheritance funds" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "diplomatic delivery" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- 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: "HONORABLE JUSTICE TAMUNO DOUGLAS" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 13 Sep 2012 18:36:08 +0100
Subject: LETTER OF COMPENSATION/SETTLEMENT.
......we fight against fraud, funds delay and impersonation.
Head Office: Plot 802, Constitution Avenue
Zone A9 Central Area
P. M.B 535, Garki-Abuja
*****24HRS SERVICE *****
LETTER OF COMPENSATION/SETTLEMENT.
This letter will definitely be amazing to you because of its realistic value. Sorry for the inconveniences that was rendered to you in your line of Inheritance Payment transaction with some impersonators some while ago.
I know that this letter will hit you by surprise, but firstly I will like to introduce myself; I am (Hon. Justice Tamuno Douglas) the Legal chairman of "ICPC", (Nigeria's Anti-Fraud Unit).
On the 3rd of September 2011, the President of The Federal Republic of Nigeria (Dr.Goodluck Jonathan) introduced a Commission named the "ICPC", (Nigeria's Anti-Fraud Unit) which is duly registered under the United Nations (U.N.O).
This particular Commission was initiated to detect fraud/funds delay/impersonation of Government Officials. Secondly, we are mandated by the US Government to settle foreign debts/fraud victims/Un-paid beneficiaries to satisfactory in other to maintain peace in the world at large and also to create a good relationship with the international bodies.
Presently, we are being paid by the American government in other to avert beneficiary funds delays/fraud here in Nigeria. So far in this present year, we have settled the likes of (Mrs. Debbie Hargrove, Mr. Micheal Wagner etc).
You are being contacted by this office today dated (11, September, 2012) because your Case File (A) is the very first File on our Settlement Files Cabinet. From our intelligent investigations and Probing processes we discovered that you are a victim of fraud/funds delay.
The "ICPC", is faithfully under my governance as the Legal Chairman of the great Commission and to this Authority I took an oath of allegiance to settle all fraud victims peacefully.
This Memorandum is to notify you that you will be settled by the Nigerian Government from our initial Deposit Account. Your settlement will be actualized within 3working days after your response to this Official Letter.
For further clarification/investigation kindly send the below information to us immediately:
1. Your Full name & residential address.
2. Mobile and fax number (for regular official contact).
3. Your inheritance funds value.
4. Amount which you have lost previously.
These above-mentioned informations will officially enable us to carry out our verification processes and after that your compensation sum/Inheritance Funds will be Electronically wired into your designated Bank account or through a Diplomatic Delivery Service, depending on which mode you prefer.
Your immediate compliance to this will expedite actions on your Payment because here in this office, we have a lot of listed victims to be settled.
Hon. Justice Tamuno Douglas
Chairman ICPC Nigeria.