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:
- ",500,000" (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)
- "abidjan" (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.
- 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.
- +22541411120 (Cote d'Ivoire, probably a prepaid mobile phone)
Fraud email example:
From: Mrs Edith Romar <email@example.com>
Reply-To: Mrs Edith Romar <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 16 Dec 2014 23:50:30 +0900 (JST)
Subject: Compliments of the day
Compliments of the day
I'm Mrs Edith Romar .Let me inform you my desire to establish in your country through your help. Though I have not met with you before but I believe, one has to risk confiding in succeed sometimes in life. There is amount of two five hundred million U.S dollars ($2,500,000.00) which my late Husband Deposited in a private bank here in Abidjan Cote d'Ivoire before his death.
I will Give you the details information in my next mail.
I wait for your reply for more information you might need and to disclose my position and more details about the fund .
Mrs Edith Romar contact me
Telephone number +225 41411120