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:
- "from the desk of" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "contact me immediately" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "chambers" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
- 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: "Barrister Abdul Raman Saad" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 3 Dec 2013 11:13:24 -0600
Subject: From the Desk of Adul Raman Saad
>From the Desk of Abdul Raman Saad & Associates Kuala Lumpur Malaysia.
Address: Level 8, Bangunan Kwsp, No. 3, Changkat Raja Chulan Off Jalan Raja Chulan, 50200, Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia.
Dear Account owner
My name is Barrister Abdul Raman Saad. Your e-mail FACEBOOK ID came up in a draw conducted by my law firm Abdul Raman Saad & Associates Kuala Lumpur Malaysia.
I am a personal attorney to Maj. Gen. Jamea Jamea, who was killed during fighting in the eastern provincial capital of Deir al-Zour, Syrian. Late Maj. Gen. Jamea Jamea is one of the Syrian governments most prominent intelligence officers. Before the death of Maj. Gen. Jamea Jamea, he made a (WILL) with my law firm stating that Four Million Five Hundred Thousand Unites Dollars (4.5Million USD) should be donated to orphanage homes to the people of Syria who has lost their families and properties, helping the less privileged and also donate to tsunami victims around Asia and the world in general.
I am particularly interested in securing these Funds from the Malaysia Bank, because they have issued a notice instructing my chambers to produce the beneficiary of this WILL within 1 month or else the funds will be credited to the Government treasury as per law here in Malaysia.
Yesterday, my chambers conducted a random draw which was supervised by the Ministry of justice and Bank board members of where the funds are deposited and your FACEBOOK ID was picked as the beneficiary to this (WILL).It is my utmost desire to execute the WILL of my late client.
I urge you to contact me immediately for further details on how this execution. You can read more on this link, hope it will touch you to help the people of Syria.
Please contact me urgently for FULL DETAILS.
Waiting for your timely acknowledgement of this letter.
Barrister Abdul Raman Saad.