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.
Click here to report a problem with this page.
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:
- "hundred thousand great british pounds" (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)
- "00,000.00" (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)
- This email message is a fake lottery scam. Consider the following facts about real lotteries:
- They don't notify winners by email.
- You can't win without first buying a lottery ticket.
- They don't randomly select email addresses to award prizes to.
- They don't use free email accounts (Yahoo, Hotmail, etc) to communicate with you.
- They don't tell you to call a mobile phone number.
- They don't tell you to keep your winnings secret.
- They will never ask a winner to pay any fees to receive a prize!
- 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.
- +447014233079 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
- 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 (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: NOTIFICATION <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 14 Dec 2013 19:12:00 +0530
Subject: SHELL PETROLEUM DEVELOPMENT
SHELL PETROLEUM DEVELOPMENT COMPANY ENGLAND
Shell Center, London, SE1 7NA - United Kingdom
Incorporation Barley House, Hare Road
Sutton, Great Britain SM1 4te, United Kingdom.
This is to inform you that your Email Address has won you Five Hundred Thousand Great British Pounds ( Â£500,000.00.GBP ) in the 2013 UK SHELL OIL Email Award which was organized by UK SHELL OIL COMPANY , every (1) year. in UK.
UK SHELL OIL COMPANY collects all the email addresses of the people that are active online, among the millions that subscribed to worldwide E-mail- data base, and few from other e-mail providers. Six people are selected every One year to benefit from this promotion and you are one of the Selected Winners.
PAYMENT OF PRIZE AND CLAIM
You as well as the other winner are therefore to receive a cash prize of (Â£500,000.00 GBP) each from the total payout. your prize awards has been insured with your e-mail address and will be transferred to your local bank account upon meeting our requirements, statutory obligations, verifications, validations and satisfactory report
Winners shall be paid in accordance with his/her Settlement Center. UK Shell Prize Award must be claimed no later than 30th days, from date of Draw Notification. Any prize not claimed within this period will be forfeited.
Stated below are your identification numbers:
Ticket Winning Number (UK/0147X4/74),
Reference Number 9-11-13-19-37-3-4,
Serial Number. 8501-07
These numbers fall within the United Kingdom Location file, you're requested to contact our approved Payment Officer (Mr. Frank Jones)
in United Kingdom and send the above winning identification numbers and below application form to him for
Payment of your
Mr. Frank Jones
You're required to fill in the below application form for claims
1. Full Names:
2. Full Home Address:
6. Current City:
8. Mobile Number;
9. Winning E-mail Address:
10. Winning Amount:
11. Scan Copy of Your Identity Proof:
I wish as the beneficiary, to claim and instruct that the above mentioned fund be handed over to me at the earliest I hope my application will be favorably granted by your good office.
Thanks for your anticipated co-operation.
Congratulations!!! Once again,
(Mrs.) HELEN JUDITH