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 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 (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: Philip Martins <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 25 Nov 2017 08:06:22 +0000
Good day , I am Philip Martins. I have emailed you earlier since without any response from you. On my first email I mentioned about my late client Kenneth, whose relatives I cannot get in touch with. But both of you have the same last name so it will be very easy to front you as his official next of kin.I am compelled to do this because I would not want the bank to push my clients funds $30 million usd into their treasury as unclaimed inheritance. If you are interested you do let me know so that I can give you Comprehensive details on what we are to do. reply me here (email@example.com)
Philip Martins (Atty).