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:
- "million 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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Jeff Goodman" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 9 Sep 2017 05:35:14 +0500
Subject: Investment deal
I am brokering an Investment deal in your country on behalf of a client.
This deal will involve the eventual investment of US$50M (Fifty Million United States Dollars) within your country.
I want to offer you an opportunity to be part of this profitable and life time business opportunity; offering you a partnership, so as to allow you manage and invest the funds in your country within the time frame of the investment/partnership scheme.
I've kept this proposal brief, since I cannot determine if this email is still functional and also your willingness to be part of this deal. If you are Interested in this offer of partnership, please respond and provide your current contact details, so I can send to you details of this offer.
Your expedient response will be appreciated.