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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "hundred thousand us dollars" (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 next of kin scam.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: =?UTF-8?Q?Mr=2e_John_Silvester_Varley=2e?= <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 13 Sep 2016 17:04:02 +0000
MR. JOHN SILVESTER VARLEY
THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE,
AUDITING AND ACCOUNTING SECTION,
BARCLAYS BANK PLC (UK.)
19 FLEET STREET,
LONDON EC4P 4DR,
I am the chief executive in charge of Auditing and Accounting section of the Barclays Bank Plc. London, United Kingdom. I crave your indulgence as I contact you in such a surprising manner but I respectfully insist you read this letter carefully as I am optimistic it will open doors for unimaginable financial rewards for both of us.
In my department I discovered an abandoned sum of Eight Million Four Hundred Thousand US dollars (US$8.4m) in account that belongs to one of our foreign customers (Mr. Daniel Richthofen from GERMANY) Who died Sixteen years ago in the year 2000 in a plane crash with the whole passengers aboard.
NB. in other for you to believe me honestly go through this (Website ) before you start with me.
Since we got information about his death, we have been expecting his next of kin to come over and claim his fund because the bank cannot release it unless somebody applies as next of kin or relation to the deceased as indicated in our banking guidelines, but unfortunately there is no one that has come for the claim. It is therefore upon this that I now decided to make this business proposal to you so that the fund could be release to you as the next of kin or relation to the deceased for safety and subsequent disbursement since nobody is coming for it and I don't want this money to go into the bank treasury as unclaimed Bill.
The request for a foreigner as next of kin in this business is occasioned by the fact that the customer was a foreigner. I agree that 40% of this money will be for you as a foreign partner in respect to the provision of a foreign account, 50% would be for me and 10% for any expenses that may arise and also part to the homeless, orphanage and motherless home.
There after I will visit your country for disbursement according to the percentages indicated. Therefore to enable the immediate transfer of this fund to you as arranged, you must apply first to the bank as relation or next of kin of the deceased indicating your Name, Your private telephone and fax number, Your Home Address and Occupation for easy and effective communication and location wherein the fund will be remitted.
1. NAME IN FULL:...
7. MARITAL STATUS:...
Upon receipt of your reply, I will send to you by fax or email the full details of the transaction and application form to apply to the bank. I will not fail to bring to your notice that this transaction is hitch free and that you should not entertain any atom of fear as all required arrangements have been made for the transfer.
You should contact me on my private email at (email@example.com) as soon as you receive this letter. Trusting to hear from you immediately and please kindly give me a call also. This is my private phone number: +44 203 695 34221
Mr. John Silvester Varley.