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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "to your nominated bank account" (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)
- "barrister" (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.
Fraud email example:
From: Barrister Barry Kayseas <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 22 May 2014 14:26:17 +0100
Subject: need urgent reply
22 May 2014
Although you might be nervous about my email as we have not met before. i`m
Barrister Barry Kayseas and i have someone who work with HSBC BANK CANADA.
there is a sum of $9,800,00 (Nine Million,Eight Hundred Thousand Dollar) in
his bank there were no beneficiary avowed relating to these Funds which
means no individual would ever come frontward to claim it.
The reason why i contacted you is that i want you and i including the
banker to work together to transfer the funds out of his bank into your
bank account or any other account of your choice. i will be pleased to see
if you can help and also be a good trusted person.
Once the funds have been transferred to your nominated bank account, then
we share it 40/30/30. Get back to me as soon as possible or more details.
Barrister Barry Kayseas