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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Chio Young" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 7 Mar 2016 13:28:18 +0100
Subject: Dear Esteem Partner,
Dear Esteem Partner,
I am Mr.Young Chio, I work with the China Merchants Bank, I wish to place your name as the beneficiary to Ten Million Three Hundred Thousand Dollars only due to the death of the depositor who died years ago along with her family.
However, I assure you that this transaction will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of law both in your country and here in China once the fund is transferred to your bank account. The funds I am referring to is right here in my bank floating in suspense account, therefore I am solicit for your cooperation to be in collaboration with me to have this done. It will be transferred into an account you will provide any where in the world.
In acceptance to my proffer, I will need you to provide the following information urgently to enable the Attorney start the processing of all the relevant legal documents for the fund remittance.
Waiting for your reply soon.
Mr. Young Chio