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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Miss Kate Peters" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 5 Apr 2016 06:22:33 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: YOUR UNPAID FUNDS IS SAVED.
I am Miss Kate Peters, A computer scientist with CENTRAL BANK NIGERIA (CBN). I am 28 years old, a British citizen just started work with CENTRAL BANK CBN, I came across your file which was marked X and your released disk painted RED, I took time to study it and found out that you have paid VIRTUALLY all fees and certificate but the fund has not been release to you. The most annoying thing is that they cannot tell you the truth that on no account will they ever release the fund to you.
Please this is like a Mafia setting in Nigeria; you may not understand it because you are not a Nigerian. The only thing I will need to release this fund is a special HARD DISK we call it HD120 GIG. I will buy two of it, recopy your information, destroy the previous one, and punch the computer to reflect in your bank account within 48 banking hours.
I will clean up the tracer and destroy your file, after which I will run away from Nigeria to meet with you. If you are interested. Do get in touch with me immediately, You should send to me your convenient tell/fax numbers for easy communications and also re confirm your banking details, so that there won't be any mistake.
Send me email to my personal email box: email@example.com
Miss Kate Peters.