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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "million 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)
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "chambers" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "high court" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "federal high court" (This court is often mentioned in '419' scams to give the victim a reason why he/she should send thousands of dollars to the scammers. A 'Federal High Court' exists in Germany and Nigeria, but not in other countries, such as the UK, Spain, Netherlands, Senegal, Benin, South Africa or other countries where fake lawyers in scams often claim to be based. )
- "abuja" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- 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.
- 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.
Fraud email example:
From: Barrister Mike Clayton <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2014 11:19:27 +0100
Subject: ATTN.Beneficiary of the funds $5.7 Million Dollars
>From Barrister Mike Clayton
Chief Legal Practitioner
Hassan & Chambers
21/ Diobo Street Port Harcourt Rivers State
ATTN.Beneficiary of the funds $5.7 Million Dollars
I am Barrister Mike Clayton who practice at Port Harcourt
Rivers State Nigeria,I want to use this opportunity to alert what is
going on with your contract file when ever I traveled to the Federal high court
Abuja, in this case I obligate to ask if you are dead or alive,
because each time I travel to
Abuja your file always go from one table to another with one Switzerland
man who have being trying to sign an agreement with the Federal high
court that he is your next of kin, please is that true? Because I left
Abuja on Friday when he was having a conclusion meeting with the chief
Justice for the final approval by Friday this week.
Please if you are still alive and want me to work with you,do get back to me
immediately for immediate cancellation of this Approval by Friday
because nothing is holding your contract payment as I have come about your
contract validation file you have concluded and paid all charges, so
nothing is holding your contract fund to be in your nominated bank
account by the paying bank OK.
View the working ID and Call to Bar Certificate below
I wait to hear from you if you are still alive.
Barrister Barrister Mike Clayton.
Tel number-- +2348102378881.