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.
- 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.
- 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: "COL.HOLFMAN SWAZTE RTD" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 13 Jul 2016 13:09:14 -0500
Subject: <<<<LETS GROW TOGETHER>>>>
Compliments of the day,
Nice to meet you,my name is Col. Holfman Swazte.I'm a retired Russian army officer residing in London England.I have sent this same letter to you previously, but I'm not certain that the letter successfully got to you.Since I have not heard from you in response to my letter, hence I am re-sending it to you again.I have an investment fund that I may wish to relocate and engage in an economic investment in your country. The investment funds is a reasonable amount and it will be of my interest to re-profile this sum to any lucrative and profitable sector that is capable of generating 10% or more on annual returns on investments.I'm seeking to partner with someone who is trustworthy,reliable and capable for a joint business partnership.
If you are willing to partner with me and to be part of the transfer activities of this Investment funds with an idea of a profit making business, you should please write back to me so we can discuss about this in full details.
Looking forward having your say on my humble request.(firstname.lastname@example.org)
Rtd. Col. Holfman Swazte