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.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr.Frederick Martins" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 18 May 2017 06:17:14 -0700
Subject: Your Urgent Response
I am quite convinced that you have received dozens Of such e-mail in the past which you have classified as one of those fraudulent E-mails that you has been receiving from different people in the time past, and it was because of this act I use our Central Bank E-mail Domain (firstname.lastname@example.org) to officially sent to you this mail.
Your name matched with a huge about of fund being abandoned in our bank here in London.You will receive these funds under legal claims; all legal documents will be carefully worked out to ensure a 100% risk free transfer.40% of the total sum would be your own portion at the end of this deal.
I have all the details. The funds in question are quite large ($22.5M).I expect a straight answer from you. If you are willing to co-operate with me.
Please get back to me through my private email: email@example.com
Thanks as I expect to hear from you.