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:
- "hundred thousand us 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)
- "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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Fathima Usman <email@example.com>
Reply-To: Fathima Usman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 8 Dec 2014 03:51:38 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Business Proposal From UAE
Â My name is Fathima Usman from New York USA and i am contacting you for an investment opportunity of my inherited fund of twelve million seven hundred thousand US dollars (US$12,700,000.00). Actually i am from the Middle East but i desire to spend all my life here in the USA and has never felt safe going to United Arab Emirate where my father lived till his death six month ago. I would want to trust you with the investment of this fund and we will agree on terms of compensation for you to take care of the investment/fund..Reply backÂ
Â Let me know your sincere willingness to work with me and i will give you more details.