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 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.
Fraud email example:
From: Mark David <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 6 Mar 2014 10:34:09 +0200
Subject: HERITAGE FUND.
Thank you for reading this email; we want you to take advantage of the
$14.7 Million left behind by my late client regarding the unclaimed
inheritance of $14.7 Million in your last name? Since you have same
surname, we want to present you as the next of kin to deceased.
Note: if you are interested, kindly provide me these information, your full
name, Address, Telephone, Fax number, Occupation, Age and Marital status.
Mr. Robinson Sita