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 phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "huge amount of money" (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)
- "hundred thousand us 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)
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- 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: UNIONBANK <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply-To: UNIONBANK <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 8 Nov 2013 03:25:36 -0800 (GMT-08:00)
We have moved your funds down to the United State On Friday 31/05/2013 to America First Credit Union.
this, you can easily receive the funds without any more hindrance or
delays because as the government here is stopping this, not allowing it
to go through because the money is huge amount of money $9,500.000. Nine
Million Five Hundred Thousand US Dollars. So we decide to forward this
down to United State - America First Credit Union for an easy payment to
Try and contact the bank now so they could complete this
payment to you at once. Please do comply with them so your lost hope
could be restored back once more and everyone will have rest of mind
about this. This is the information they require from you;
You full name-------------
Account number --------------
Your phone number----------------
A copy of your identity
make sure you identify this code to them (UN-2B4) that is the
transaction code number we have given to them for you regarding the
funds. So take note they will ask this code from you.
Person to contact: Mr. Paul Derita
America First Credit Union
Address. 1344 West 4675 South Riverdale,
UT 84405. United States
E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
For the management Union Bank-Benin
E-mail Address: email@example.com