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 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
- 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 (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "NIGERIA EMBASSY WASHINGTON DC ATM CARD DELIVERY NOTICE." (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 10 Apr 2014 11:22:01 -0700
Subject: NIGERIA EMBASSY WASHINGTON DC ATM MASTER CARD DELIVERY.
Nigeria Embassy,Washington DC,United States.
1333 16th Street NW
Washington DC 20036,
Office of Prof,Adebowale Adefuye.
Attn: ATM Master Card Beneficiary.
This is to inform your officially that our Defence Attaché here in the Nigeria Embassy Washington DC, United States of America has brought your uploaded ATM MASTER GOLD CARD valued the sum US$4.5Million from Nigeria yesterday Wednesday being 9th April 2014 and ready for mailing to you from our Embassy here in Washington,your ATM Gold MASTER Card was programmed and uploaded by our Bankers HSBC Bank in London and was handed over to our defense attache by Mr President Federal Republic of Nigeria Dr.Good luck Jonathan GCFR for onward hand over to me as the Country's representative here in the United States,our defense attache who just came back last week Friday from Nigeria with YOUR ATM Global Master Card and has handed them over to me as the Nigeria Ambassador to United States of America for onward delivery to your home or office address in your country from Washington DC here in United States which you have to reconfirm to our Embassy for urgent delivery,this arrangement is made to make sure you receive you
Note this Embassy will courier your ATM GOLD MASTER Card from our Embassy here through Express Courier to your address at no cost of yours hence we will pay the courier fees from Washington DC here to your address either here in the United States or outside the United States which you have to send to us immediately you receive this letter,your email address and name is attached on the parcel containing your Master Card and that is why we are able to contact you through your email as sent to us earlier today by the Finance and Budget Director in Nigeria.Note that this funds is accrued to you based on your Inheritance/Lotto/Contract benefits as approved by the United Nations and the World Bank in agreement with the Nigerian Government for immediate payment you.
Sequel to the above you are urgently requested to contact the Director of Finance and Budget in the Office of Mr.President in Nigeria and ask him to release to you immediately your Activated PIN Code Numbers (SECRET PIN NUMBER) FOUR DIGITS of your ATM GOLD MASTER CARD which you will use to make withdrawal from your ATM Card once you receive your card through our Embassy here in Wahington DC,this is a Presidential order attached on your parcel by Mr.President in other not to release your Pin Codes to the defense Attache who might tamper with it,so call the Finance Director in the Presidency on his direct mobile number +234-8090-718-221, his name is Dr.Philip Edozie,please don't waste any time immediately you receive this letter today so that he only will release your PIN CODE Password details as he cannot release that to me or another person rather you the ATM GOLD card beneficiary for security reasons,his email id is: ( email@example.com ) if you wish to write to him though is not necessary as it will
Note: You will only send to the Director of Finance and Budget in the Presidency Dr.Philip Edozie the sum of US$295 ONLY(Two Hundred and Ninety Five Dollars) which is the cost for the Activations PIN Code Password fees,that is the only amount you will send to him before he will release your CODE to you,send to our embassy your accurate receiving address here in United States where you want us to send your card to and at our own cost and not you,please for urgency i will suggest you call the gentleman on his direct phone number as thus:234-8090-718-221 so that he will act fast as this transactions demands,and his email remains: firstname.lastname@example.org .
Update our Embassy as soon as you must have obtain your Activated Pin Code Numbers from Dr.Philip Edozie in Nigeria as instructed above to enable us make your delivery from WASHINGTON DC here without delays.
Group Capt. Aliyu Bello
Nigeria Embassy,Washington DC,USA.
For:AMBASSADOR/HEAD OF MISSION
His Excellency (Prof.) Adebowale Ibidapo Adefuye.