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:
- "million united states dollars" (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)
- ",000,000" (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)
- "is 100% risk free" (almost true for the criminal trying to scam you - arrests of online criminals are rare)
- "there is no risk involved" (almost true for the criminal trying to scam you - arrests of online criminals are rare)
- "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: "Mr. ACHIVERA" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 16 Jun 2014 15:23:03 +0200
Subject: RE:FOR YOU
My name is barrister Marcus Achivera. I am a financial consultant/attorney for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and other Middle East oil producing countries.
Recently, the Saudi government engaged my services to audit the books of the National Oil Petroleum Company (Saudi) and I discovered several diversions of funds and inflation of contract payment resulting from the sales of crude oil amounting to BILLIONS OF DOLLARS.
At the end of my findings, I was able to recover almost all the funds back to the Saudi government and I was able to set aside the total sum of $15,000,000.00 (Fifteen Million United States Dollars Only) to be used for investment purpose in any good business that will generate profit and return on investment.
In view of the above, I propose the following.
I want to partner with you. I want you to send me a brief summary of any good business investment plan you think we can invest this funds that will generate good profit. The investment plan will last for a period of ten years and whatever profit realized will be shared amongst us 50.
If you are willing to assist and partner with me in this business venture, I need you to understand that there is no risk involved. This transaction is 100% risk free as I followed the rules of law and secured all the necessary documentation to back up this funds and investment plan.
If you are interested and willing to partner with me please send me the following at once.
1) YOUR FULL NAME AND ADDRESS
2) YOUR DIRECT TELEPHONE NUMBER
Once I receive this information from you, I will use them to secure all the necessary documentation involved and also prepare a joint venture partnership agreement that will bind us in this investment plan.
Finally, if you have any questions do not hesitate to contact me 24hours am here at your services.
I look forward to hearing from you