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:
- "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.
- 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: john mark <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply-To: john mark <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 14 Oct 2014 12:14:42 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Re: Re; Deliver Your Consignment Box.
Attn Please ,Â We have last month of May 2014 received a payment credit instructionfrom the federal Government of Royal Kingdom of Benin Republic tocredit your account with your contract payment which is in the custodyof our reserve Bank account here in Benin Republic. This is to notifyyou that your funds $USD 15.500.000.00 Dollars has been programmed forimmediate release into your nominated account but we can not transferthis funds directly to your nominated bank account Because we arehaving a little problem with International Monetary Fund (IMF) so ourmethod of payment is by Diplomatic Courier Service Via United ParcelSecurity Shipping Company.Â Be inform that your funds have been package like a consignment box anddeposited in the custody of UPS United Parcel Services head office herein Benin Republic for immediate delivery to your house,The reason whileUPS is chosen for the delivery is that they are the best shippingcompany in the world and our government has issued and signed all thenecessary document needed to make the delivery safe.Â Note: That the UPS United Parcel Services do not know the content ofyour box it is been registered as a box of Family Valuables Belongingto avoid delaying in delivery of your consignment,The Government ofBenin Republic has already paid the official delivery cost and (yellowTag Paper,insurance) fee it was deducted from the interest your moneyaccumulated in the custody of our Reserve Bank here in Benin Republicbefore the total sum of $15.500.000.00 USD was packaged as aconsignment and sealed as metallic showing that it is not a Drug Moneyor meant to sponsor Terrorist attack in your Country.Â (UNITED PARCEL SERVICES UPS COOPERATE)Contact Person: Dr. Nelson WhiteE-mail : firstname.lastname@example.orgTel: +229-68866445Here is the information needed to deliver your consignment box to you.Your Full Name: _________________Your Complete Address : _____________________________Name of Country /City of Residence:____________________Direct Home Telephone /Mobile Number:_______________________copy of your id for identifications if any; _________Waiting for your immediate respond once you received your parcel.Best RegardsDr Ben WilsonPayment Director.