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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "million 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 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "ALI IBRAHIM" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 30 Jul 2016 11:28:34 +0100
Subject: GET BACK TO ME AS SSON AS POSSIBLE
I have summed up courage to contact you.I am presently working in Iraq with an international organization that which
I will also disclose later, I found your contact particulars in an address journal.I am seeking for your assistance
to evacuate the sum of (US$18.523 Million Dollars) Eighteen Million, five Hundred And Twenty Three
Thousand US Dollars to your country or any other safe country of your choice as far as I can be assured that my share
will be safe in your care until I complete my service here. I have survived 6 suicide bomb attacks by the special grace of God,
this and other reasons I will mention later has prompted me to reach out for help, I honestly want this matter to be resolved
immediately. kindly fill up this requirements like:
Your full name:
Mr Ali Ibrahim
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