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:
- "required fee " (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- 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)
- telephone number: +1 772-249-3857 and his email address as;firstname.lastname@example.org, informing us that you are dead and that he's your next of (Gmail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "Internal Revenue Service" <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 2018 06:47:18 +0700
Subject: Greetings From The Internal Revenue Service United States
Greetings From The Internal Revenue Service United States.
This office is hereby warning you to desist from sending someone else to
come and claim your fund without any prior information to them. This is
making it the second time such thing is happening, you have to know that
this is IRS Commissioner,
Mr. David Kautter, and our main work is to make sure that you receive your
fund.which is $10.5 million(USD)
So please if you are not ready to come or send the required fee to
complete your delivery to you, then kindly wait until you are ready or you
should write an application letter to our office for approval and you
should also send the person with enough proof, if not then you together
with the person you send will be handle according to the law.
Yesterday, we received another email; this time from a Man called Mr.
Eric,He called with this telephone number: +1 772-249-3857 and his email
address as;firstname.lastname@example.org, informing us that you are dead and that
He's your next of kin, so we should send your fund to His home address:
1011 s 7th St. Water town, WI 53094. He also told us that you instructed
Him to claim your properties including your funds in-case you are nowhere
to be found as your next of kin.
He also recommended that He knew He was going to send some money to get
the fund transferred to He's because you told Him something like that and
we should let Him know the cost. We asked Him to hold on, so that we
verify as we did not discuss that with you before.
Please clarify us if you are still alive to know if this is true or not
because we are confused now about this claims and you are advice to get
back to us immediately, because itâs your response that will determine
what we will do on this issue.
Your urgent response will be highly appreciated if you are still alive.
Mr. David Kautter