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:
- "money gram" (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Mr Wilson Amos <"www."@pastel.ocn.ne.jp>
Reply-To: Mr Wilson Amos <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 8 Dec 2016 05:35:19 +0900 (JST)
Subject: Attention !!!
FOREIGN OPERATION MANAGER PAYMENT OFFICE
MONEY GRAM MONEY TRANSFER OFFICE
ADDRESS: 1823 W Main St, Louisville, OH 44641, United States
Hours: Open today Â· 9:00 am â 9:00 pm
OFFICE TEL: +1 (630)-748-8626 for Call and Text SMS..
The International Monetary Fund Annual Compensation from USA .
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is compensating all the 2015 scam victims and your email address was found in the scam victims list. This Money GramÂ®office has been mandated by the IMF to transfer your compensation to you via Money GramÂ® Money Transfer.
However, we have concluded to effect your own payment through Money GramÂ®Money Transfer, $4,920.00 USD pay Day until the total sum of $1.8Million is completely transferred to you the receiver.
We can not be able to send the payment with your email address alone, we are here by needed your information to where we will be sending the funds. You Can Text us and fill below Information Or email us via email.
( Address)...................... ..........
(Your Age........................... .......
(ID copy)............. ..................
Note that your payment files will be returned to the IMF within 72 hours if we did not hear from you because this was the instruction given to us by the IMF office here in Louisville Ohio USA. We will start the transfer as soon as we received your information. You are hereby warned not to communicate or duplicate this message for any reason what so ever because the US FBI is already on trace of the criminals from Africa.
Mr Wilson Amos
Foreign Operation Manager Payment Office
Money Gram Money Transfer Office
Address: 1823 W Main St, Louisville, OH 44641, United States
Hours: Open today Â· 9:00 am â 9:00 pm
OFFICE TEL: +1 (630)-748-8626 for Call and Text SMS