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:
- "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)
- "certified bank draft" (Beware of any scheme that involves cashing checks or money orders and then wiring a portion of the funds somewhere - you'll be liable for the entire amount if the checks or money orders turn out to be fake, even after you have received and forwarded cash. If it's a lottery prize, remember that real lotteries do not pay large prizes by check. They wire the money directly to your bank account and you do not pay for that. Many scammers promise a large check only in order to then demand payment of courier fees for a fake courier service. )
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Mrs Zinchin Sullin <email@example.com>
Reply-To: Mrs Zinchin Sullin <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 19 Jan 2015 18:13:34 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Your Immediate Attention Required Now ..
Â Attention:My Dear.
I write to inform you that i have your Certified Bank Draft here in my office to send to you as directed by my boss. I have been waiting for you since to come down here and pick up your Bank
Draft ofÂ SixÂ Million Dollars ($6Million Dollars) but did not heard from you for long time now, Well, i want you to know that i have deposited the Bank Draft with Reserve Bank of Benin
Republic, because i will be traveling to London England for my year course and will not come back till ending of May 2015.
So now i have arranged with Reserve Bank of Benin Republic to make your payment to you with their new ATM MASTER CARD which you can use to withdraw your money in any ATM MACHINE around the
globe/world and what you will be withdrawing Daily is $8,000 Dollar's every day . Because the Bank Draft was getting to the expire date. So You have to contact the Reserve Bank of Benin
Republic,Â with your full contact information's such as follows:
1) Your Full Name==========
2) Your Residential Address=======
3)Your Postal Address===========
4) Your Phone And Fax Number=======
5)Your E-mail address============
7)Your Official Age============
However, Kindly contact the delivery agent who is in charge of the delivery of your ATM Master CARD
DR RICHARD FAGUSON the United Nation Payment Agent in Reserve Bank of Benin Republic.
So try to contact DR RICHARD FAGUSON United Nation Payment Agent inÂ Benin Republic for your ATM Card as soon as possible to quicken the process of your ATM Card before it too late.Let me
know as soon as you receive your ATM Master Card.
Thank you and may the good lord be with you
Mrs Zinchin Sullin