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:
- "chambers" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- 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: "Alexander Fredman" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 14 Dec 2016 19:05:06 -0000
Subject: Urgent business proposal
6 Thirlestane Road, Edinburgh, Edinburgh, EH19 1AL
Firstly, I must solicit your confidence in this transaction; this is by virtue of its nature as being utterly confidential. Though I know that a transaction of this magnitude will make one apprehensive and worried, but I am assuring you that all will be well at the end of the day.
Let me start by first introducing myself properly to you. It may surprise you receiving this letter from me, since there was no previous correspondence between us. My name is Alexander Fredman personal Attorney to Late Mr PAUL . He died in the year 2000. My purpose of contacting you is for you to help me secure the funds left behind by my late client to avoid it being confiscated or declare unserviceable by the Bank where this fund is valued £6,850.000.00 (Six Million Eight Hundred and Fifty Thousand Pounds) which was deposited by my client before his death.
The Bank has been issuing notice to contact the relative or the account will be declared unserviceable and the fund will be diverted to the Bank treasury, so far all my efforts to get a hold of someone related to this man has proved abortive. Hence, I have contacted you. I am actually asking for your consent to present you to the Bank as the next of Kin/beneficiary of my late client's fund, since you have the same surname, so that the proceeds of this account can be paid to your bank account.
All the legal documentation to back on to your claim as my clients relative, I shall work to provide them.
All I require is your honest cooperation to enable us achieve this transaction. I wish to point out that I suggest 10% of this money to be donated to Charity Organizations, while the remaining will be shared equally between us. If you are interested, please contact me via Tel: +44-740-577-4336 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org upon your response, I shall then provide you with more details that will help you understand this transaction well.
The intended transaction will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any infraction of the law. However, if this business proposition offends your moral ethics, do accept my sincere apology. If you wish to achieve this goal with me, kindly get back to me with your interest for further explanation. Include your full name in your response.
Awaiting for your immediate response.
OUR LAW FIRM IS UNIQUE AND OUR LAWYERS ARE FRIENDLY AND RESPECTFUL TO OUR CLIENTS