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:
- "inheritance funds" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "consignment " (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)
- "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)
- "diplomatic courier" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- "courier service" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Godwin" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 25 Sep 2014 19:49:58 -0400
We have received today payment credit instruction from the new President of Federal Government of Nigeria (DR JONATHAN GOODLUCK)to credit your account with your full inheritance funds from the Nigerian reserve account with our bank.
This is to notify you that your funds ($10.5 MILLION) has been programmed for immediate release into your nominated account but we can not transfer this funds direct to your nominated bank account, because we are having a little problem with International Monetary Fund (IMF) so our method of payment is by Diplomatic Courier Service.
YOUR DIPLOMAT HAS ARRIVED WITH YOUR CONSIGNENT BOX AT THE DALLAS F/W INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT DALLAS TEXAS STATE INTERNATIONAI AIRPORT TEXAS USA CONTACT HIM NOW:(972 559 8536) or (972 559 8536)
Note; that you must reconfirm your full address and valid phone# to him through thes immediately you receive these email to enable him deliver your cash consignment to you without any mistake.