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.
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- 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: "Mr.Steven Walker" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 14 Dec 2013 03:35:14 +1000
Subject: Greetings To You
Steven Walker James (Esq)
Village Arcade Station Road
London E4 7DA, United Kingdom.
Greetings To You
I am Steven Walker, a personal attorney/sole executor to the late Engineer Robert M.Alexandra hereinafter referred to as" my client" I represent the interest of my client killed with his immediate family in a fatal motor accident in East London on November 5, 2002 and I will like to negotiate the terms of investment of resources available to him.On behalf of the Trustees and Executor of the estate of Late Engr.Robert M.Giarrusso I once again try to notify you as my earlier letter were returned undelivered. I wish to notify you that late Engr.Robert, made you a beneficiary to his WILL. He left the sum of Six Million Eight Hundred Thousand British Pounds Sterling only (£6.8million) to you in the Codicil and last testament to his WILL. This may sound strange and unbelievable to you, but it is real and true. Being a widely traveled man, he must have been in contact with you in the past or simply you were nominated to him by one of his numerous friends abroad who wished you good. Engr.Robert until his death wa
Await your prompt response.
Yours in Service,
Barr Steven James Walker