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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "dear sir/madam" (a standard Nigerian greeting phrase)
- "abuja" (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.
- 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 (Volny; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
- ambassador mr. adebayo oni phone: 1 202 793 5586email: email@example.com
dear sir/madam, i write you after a submission from the (Volny; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "Embassy of Nigeria Washington D.C"
Date: 11 Mar 2016 14:09:33 +0100
Subject: Re: Your Corporation Needed
The Embassy of Nigeria Washington D.C.Northwest, 3519 International Ct NW, Washington, DC 20008, United StatesOffice of the Consular General, Senior Special Adviser to the Ambassador Mr. Adebayo Oni Phone: 1 202 793 5586Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dear Sir/Madam, I write you after a submission from the office of the presidency with strict instruction to ensure that we communicate with you in order for you not to blame Nigeria for your misfortune or misconduct after dealing with criminals who claims to be working for the office of the presidency or representing Nigeria based on your dealing towards receiving your approved payment. The office of the president Federal Republic of Nigeria has mandated that all hands must be put on deck to fight corruption or corruption will kill Nigeria and every possible medium must be used to ensure that we direct fund beneficiaries on the right part to follow in order not to fall victims to criminals who plan on extorting your hard end money all in the name to help you receive your funds. The Office of the Consular General Washington DC been a public office has decided to join in this fight against corruption. As a beneficiary, be informed that the allocation of your approved payment has been exclusively made the responsibility of the budget office and you are not allowed to deal with any other office except the budget office for the allocation of your funds. As the case maybe, it is very important you contact the budget office immediately without any further delay so that you can advised on procedures for the release of your funds as approved to the tone of US$10.5M. Dr. Bright OkoguDirector-General, Budget Office of the FederationCentral Business Area, P.M.B. 251 Amadu Bello Way Garki, Abuja FCT, NigeriaPhone: 234 01 2774546 Ex 6Email: email@example.com Regards, Mr. Adebayo Oni Senior Special Adviser to the Ambassador Office of the Consular General, Washington, DC