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:
- "storage fee" (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. )
- "the 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)
- "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. )
- "email@example.com" (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.
Fraud email example:
From: "Benson Annin" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 27 Feb 2017 20:01:21 +0700
Subject: URGENT NOTICE,
Sequel to your non response of my earlier letter to you for your Unclaimed Fund of $5.5m USD since I did not hear from you, Then I have deposited the total Money valued $5.5m at CARGO HEAD OFFICE as a consignment box because I traveled out of the country and I will not be back till next month end.
Please contact the Trust securities & CARGO Head office to deliver your consignment box to you. I have paid for the delivery Charges. the only fee you will pay is for the Storage the box accumulated since the box deposited with them.
please take note that as soon as they deliver the consignment, use this CODE NUMBERS TO OPEN THE BOX So AS TO CONFIRM THE TOTAL FUNDS OF FIVE MILLION,FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND UNITED STATES DOLLARS ($5.5M) THIS CODE ( 0036589] IS FOR YOU AND MUST BE KEPT CONFIDENTIAL BECAUSE IT IS JUST FOR YOU ALONE. PLEASE CONTACT THE COURIER COMPANY AT THE BELOW INFORMATION.
TRUST CARGO SECURITY SERVICE HEAD OFFICE
DISPATCH DIRECTOR, Rev Dr James A. Momoh
Try to contact them as soon as possible to avoid any more storage fees Please re-confirm the below information to the company immediately and tell them to deliver your consignment at your door step as soon as Possible. please be aware that they are waiting for you to contact them with your information to avoid mistake in delivery.
(1)Your Full Name:
(2) Your Address:
(3)Your Cell Phone:
(4) Your Company Name:
(5) Your Company Address:
(6)Your Company Position:
(7) Your Profession:
(8) Your Age:
(9)Your Marital Status:
Please always call them to know the condition of this consignment