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:
- "will come to you as a surprise" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "i feel quite safe dealing with you in this important business" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Chandrine Abdalla <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply-To: Chandrine Abdalla <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 2014 16:31:25 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Hi Dear!
Â Hi Dear!
How are you? I know this mail will come to you as a surprise, because you donât know me Let me first of all introduce myself to you, my name is Miss Chandrine Ahmed Abdalla I am girl from South Sudan. I am tall and fair in complexion, I am Loving and caring. I am writing this mail to you with tears and sorrow from my heart. And I will be very glad if you can contact me through my email address, and I will tell you more about myself
Remember I wish to contact you personally for a long time relationship and business investment assistance in your Country. So I feel quite safe dealing with you in this important business, I having gone through your remarkable profile which interested me to contact you. Please I have a lot of special things I want to discuss with you immediately I hear back from you I am waiting to hear from you soon