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:
- "huge amount of money" (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)
- "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.
Fraud email example:
From: "GENERAL STEPHEN." <"LTstephen6."@eagle.ocn.ne.jp>
Reply-To: "GENERAL STEPHEN." <LTstephen671@outlook.com>
Date: Thu, 4 May 2017 15:05:52 +0900 (JST)
Subject: DEAR FRIEND, I AM LT GENERAL STEPHEN.J.TOWNSEND.
I AM LT GENERAL STEPHEN.J.TOWNSEND OF UNITED STATES Army,currently am carrying out my duty here in Syria. Few days ago me and my group carried out a massive attack against the Isis terrorist group and luckily we came across a very huge amount of money which the Isis terrorist group is using in purchasing of arms. I have settled few top officers who are involved in attacking the terrorist group and right now I have a very huge amount of money which now belongs to me.The reason why i emailed you is to know if you can help me in safe guiding mine after which i will reward to you exactly the amount of thirty percent (30%) of the total amount for your help in safe keeping of the money.
I will wait for your positive response as soon as possible,please you should ignore this mail if you are not willing in this deal.
Here is my personal email address : ( LTstephen671@outlook.com ) and you can contact me as soon as possible so that I will give you guide lines on how to go about it.
LT GENERAL STEPHEN.J.TOWNSEND.