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:
- "consignment " (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. X" <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 04 Aug 2016 18:38:35 -0300
Subject: IMPORTANT NOTICE!!
My Name is Wend swartz am member of the U.S.A ARMY USARPAC medical team, which was deployed to Iraq at the beginning of the war in Iraq. Although the war has ended But am still in Iraq because i have some fund in a consignment deposited with a security company, for me to proved this to you, see the site below for more information.
I got your contact from a International League Equality & Diversity directory from your country who told me how reliable you are and am contacting you base on that and i do hope you are going to give me your trust in carrying out this project which will be of benefit for you too.
I will need you to assist me to received This funds in a consignment.
As soon as i hear from you i will give you more details.