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:
- "there are practically no risks involved" (almost true for the criminal trying to scam you - arrests of online criminals are rare)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Dinesh Sharma <email@example.com> (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 21 Jul 2016 04:03:05 -0500
Subject: From Citi Bank Dubai.
FROM THE BRANCH MANAGER
CITI BANK AL WASL BRANCH
Hello My Friend.
I am very sorry to contact you in this business. I got your contact via on my search for a reliable, honest and a trust worthy person to entrust this huge transfer project with. My name is Mr Dinesh Sharma. I am the manager of Citi Bank Al Wasl Branch Plc Dubai,and i am from United Arab Emirates, I am married with three kids. I am writing to solicit ,for your assistance in the transfer of funds valued at $4,750,000.00 ( four million seven hundred and fifty thousand United States Dollars). This fund is the excess of what my branch make in which I am the Manager made as profit during the last annual audition. I have already submitted an approved end of the year report for the year to my head office in and they will never know of this excess.
As an official of the bank i can not be directly connected to this fund, so this informed me of contacting you for us to work for mutual benefits.I want you to assist in receiving this fund into your bank account for us. Meanwhile you will have 50% of the total fund. Note there are practically no risks involved as it is going to be bank to bank transfer. All i need from you is to stand as the original depositor of this fund who made the deposit with our branch so that my Head office can order the transfer to your designated bank account.
If you accept to work with me, i will appreciate it so much. As soon as i receive your response, i will give you details on how we can achieve it successfully. You can contact me through my personal E-mail address.
Mr. Dinesh Sharma.