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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "Sarah morris fund " <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 03 Jan 2017 08:05:35 -0500
Subject: Sarah morris charity fund
My Name is Sarah Morris from California, USA. I am a former Director and In=
vestor with Addax Petroleum and i have meet you before at your company when=
i visited china JiangSu Chuangwei Industry and you gave me your email an=
d phone number Mobilephone: 86-15151135324
but I'm presently diagnosed with Leukemia (Cancer of the Blood), which ac=
cording to the medical team handling my case, I do not have a chance of sur=
viving this ailment.
However, I have decided to set up a Charitable Foundation, to create awaren=
ess about CANCER related disease, helping the disable and less privileged i=
n the society as a way of keeping a legacy not for myself, but for the worl=
d in general that after my demise I will be remembered for good.
Consequently, I Have set aside the sum of $7.3 million for setting up this =
memorial foundation and would love you to chair and head it in the capacity=
of handling and administering the day-to-day running of this foundation af=
ter my demise.the fund is at UBS Bank Zurich Switzerland the sum of $7.3 m=
I have meet you before at JiangSu Chuangwei Industry =
I wait to hear from you on my personal email firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs Sarah Morris