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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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:
- "swift card payment center" (this phrase is often used in the ATM card payment scam)
- "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)
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- "(efcc)" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "(ecowas)" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- "lagos" (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 free webmail addresses. Use of such addresses is typical for scams. Lotteries, banks and any but the smallest of companies do not normally use such addresses. Criminals use them to anonymously send and receive email at Internet cafes.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr.Ibrahim Lamorde" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 5 Dec 2014 23:52:48 +0700
Subject: ECONOMIC & FINANCIAL CRIME COMMISSION
ECONOMIC & FINANCIAL CRIME COMMISSION
(EFCC) FOREIGN OPERATIONS DEPT, (ECO WAS),
I am Ibrahim Lamorde the chairman of ECONOMIC & FINANCIAL CRIME COMMISSION (EFCC).EFCC in alliance with economic community of West African states (ECOWAS)with the head office here in Nigeria.we have been working towards the eradication of fraudsters and scam artists in western part of Africa with the help of the united states government and the united Nation.
We have been able to track down so many of this scam artist in various part of west Africa countries which includes(NIGERIA, REPUBLIC OF BENIN, TOGO,GHANA CAMERON AND SENEGAL)and they are all in our custody here in Lagos Nigeria. We have been able to recover so much money from these scam artists.The United Nation Anti-Crime commission and the United state Government have ordered the money recovered from the scamers to be shared among 100 lucky people around the global.
This email is been directed to you because your email address was found in one of the scam Artists file anda computer hard disk in our custwilliamsody here in Nigeria.you are therefore being compensated with $1.5Million Dollars.we have also arrested all those who claim that they are barristers,bank officials,lottery Agent who has money for transfer or want you to be the next of kin of such fund which does not exist.
Since your name appeared among the lucky beneficiaries who will receive a compensation of $1.5Million,we have arranged your payment through our swift card payment center.But not that,you are to make a payment of $200 dollars for the save keeping of your ATM CARD before it can be delivered to your house address.
Feel free to contact the processing office:Barrister Samuel Allen..the swift card has been specially prepared to enable you withdraw your money in any ATM machine in any part of the world,but the maximum is five thousand dollars only per day. So you are advice to contact,the processing officer Barrister Samuel Allen Barron with your provided information's required.
CONTACT PERSON: Samuel Allen.
CONTACT EMAIL: email@example.com
provide the information below to enable him prepare your ATM Master Credit Card including your pin to access it.
1)YOUR FULL NAME.
2)YOUR RECEIVING ADDRESS.
3)YOUR TELEPHONE NUMBER.
CHAIRMAN ECONOMIC & FINANCIAL CRIME COMMISSION
(EFCC) FOREIGN OPERATIONS DEPT, LAGOS-NIGERIA.
Note:that if no seriousness is seen in you.we have no choice to other than to cancel your fund.we have no time to waste in this transaction any more.this is the second letter and also do disregard any email you get from any importer or office claiming to be in possession of your ATM card.you are hereby advice only to be in contact with Barrister lordruben of the ATM CARD possessing center who is the rightful person to deal with in regards to your fund and forward any emails you get from impostors to him so we could act upon and commence investigation.