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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- "cotonou" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- 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 (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "International Monetary Fund" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 19 May 2017 12:22:34 +0100
Subject: Furthermore identification code EGZOXHXTFRDWBG
Please move this email to your inbox if you find it in your spam folder,The International Monetary Fund Investigation Department Washington DC is here by to inform you that we recently received several reports through our Global surveillance network that your transaction has failed to be successful after diverse efforts because the offices and individuals involved has made it a swindle opportunity hence they continue to demand for money without substantial reasons.
Consequently this esteemed office has today recuperated your funds valued the sum of $10.5M Ten Million Five Hundred Thousand Dollars from the erratic custody, meanwhile if you noticed any change of amount or value it's rather as a result of the false information you have been fed or imparted by those hoodlums.Your fund was securely entrusted to OraBank Plc in Cotonou, Benin Republic today under a special supervision of Mr.Andrea Rogers an experienced OraBank official who is to be conducting your payment henceforth. Therefore you are advised to
contact the Bank representative with the information outlined below;
OraBank Benin Republic
Contact Person: Mr. Andrea Rogers
Furthermore identification code EGZOXHXTFRDWBG was issued by OraBank which you are required to indicate by using it as the subject of your email for verification or easy identification and the following information are also required; Your personal profile Profession, names, age, Home address, phone number# Your MOBILE and LANDLINE required.
The Name of the Bank
The account details will comprise the full address of the bank.
The Routing number
Account name and Account number.
Henceforth you are advised to terminated all conversation or correspondent with any office, individual in other Africa countries or elsewhere claiming to be in custody of your fund, you should consider it a hoax because your fund was official entrusted to OraBank by this office today. Finally you are advice to comply with instruction and directives of OraBank accordingly to enable them facilitate your payment promptly.
International Monetary Fund
Investigation Department Washington DC.