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:
- "inheritance funds" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "consignment " (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)
- "hundred thousand united states 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)
- "courier company" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- "cotonou" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- "remain blessed" (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
Fraud email example:
From: "mr. joseph williams" <"w.w.w."@vesta.ocn.ne.jp>
Reply-To: "mr. joseph williams" <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 20 Feb 2017 08:04:47 +0900 (JST)
Subject: Hello my dear good news,
Hello my dear good news,
Good day and how are you today? Having reviewed all the obstacles and problems surrounding your over due inheritance funds valued $10.8 Million USD (Ten Million Eight Hundred Thousand United States Dollars) payment and your inability to meet up with the charges required due to unnecessary protocols involved.
It is my great pleasure to inform you that we have successfully arranged with UBA Bank Director, Dr.JOHN KENETH to covert your above mentioned fund which was originally in a Consignment box into ATM Chieve card and ready for delivery to your door step.
I am happy when UBA Bank Director, Dr.JOHN KENETH called me that all the necessary arrangement has been completed that he has converted the total amount into ATM Card in your name, after which I went to DHL Courier Company and have it registered for onward delivery to your address. Kindly study bellow information for your deposit details:
Description: UBA BANK (ATM CARD)
Depositor: Linda Conti
Deposit Number: DHL-101-PL45
Deposit Certificate N0.E405576
Sort/Clearance Code: DHL/101-45/P50
According to Mrs Linda Conti, you can able to withdraw $2,500.00 per each withdrawal at daily limit of $15,000.00 until you withdraw your total $10.8 Million from the ATM CARD. So all you need is to write application letter to bellow DHL Courier Company contact information or call their foreign operation department Dr. Douglas Ike for immediate delivery schedule of your ATM CARD to any address of your.
Contact Person: Dr. Douglas Ike (Foreign Operation Department)
DHL Courier Company Cotonou Benin,
Plot No. 23 Patte D'Oie 03 BP 2147 Cotonou
Telephone Number: +229 99253778
Don't forget to reconfirm your current data as Dr. Douglas Ike
requested to enable their delivery agent deliver went he arrive.
Herein is what they need from you
1. Your Full Names:_____________
2. Postal Address:__________
3. Direct Cell Numbers:_______
4. E-mail Address:__________
Please hurry up now as your package might attract more charges if it
stays more than 3days with DHL and do keep me posted for record
Thanks and remain blessed
Mr. Johnson Williams
Office Contact number (+14046625921)
IMF Head Quarter Dept Reconciliation Committee