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 message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Yahoo; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
Date: Tue, 20 Nov 2012 04:09:32 +0800
Subject: Hi, My name is Mr.Joseph Johnson,i am a financial consultant and banker
with Fidelity Bank Plc
Hi, My name is Mr.Joseph Johnson,i am a financial consultant and banker with Fidelity Bank Plc.I want you to handle this funds (US$65.5Million),this is a contract investment fund of Late Mr. Kirsten Windus deposited with Fidelity Bank Plc.
can you be trusted to execute this project with me? Please kindly get back to me with your information :
YOUR FULL NAME ............
YOUR PHONE NUMBER..........
YOUR DATE OF BIRTH.........
If you can be trusted,reply urgently to enable me give you more secret details.
I await your prompt response. via my private e-mail ( email@example.com )
Mr. Joseph Johnson