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:
- "atm payment department" (this phrase is often used in the ATM card payment scam)
- "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)
- "hundred thousand united state 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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "courier service" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- "email@example.com" (this email address looks like addresses used in "ATM SWIFT card" scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs. Nancy Janet" <WWW.@theia.ocn.ne.jp>
Reply-To: "Mrs. Nancy Janet" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 18 Apr 2018 02:35:43 +0900 (JST)
Subject: Your Card is ready for deliver
This is to let you know that your email message was well received together with your address: 601 West Market Street, Louisville, Kentucky 75287, where the ATM will be deliver to you please re-confirm your full address once again, Meanwhile like you have been told by Mr. Malik Ndiaye about your ATM VISA Card containing sum of US$2.7Million United States Dollars with us right now in Republic of Benin, but due to the meeting that was carried out with some Executive Management Officials of this Bank we arrived to a better conclusion that your ATM Card will be shipped to you through courier services because that is the only fastest and easiest way to get you the package, meanwhile we went to many courier companies to ascertain their delivery cost and we have been able to gather some information about their delivery procedures for adequate services.
Notice: You are advised that a maximum withdrawal value of $20,000.00 is permitted per day and your ATM CARD is duly inter-switched and you can make withdrawal in any location of the ATM Center of your choice/nearest to you. Arrangement with those accredited courier companies to be fully insured by Nicon Insurance Corporation to oversee the delivery of the ATM Card to you without further delay. like I stated before that Mr. Malik Ndiaye who deposited your ATM CARD under our custody here has paid for the processing and the other documentation fees, so the only thing that left for you to do now is to provide us with your mail delivery address and your contact phone number to enable us authorize the delivery without further delay.
ATM DATA'S: It is our pleasure to inform you that your ATM serial number is; 4577 9320 0882 6678 it has been approved and re-validated in your favor last week Wednesday. Your secret #PIN number can only be opened by you and it is for your eyes only, Once again the ATM Card value is $2.7 Million (Two Million, Seven Hundred Thousand United State Dollars Only), I am given you an assurance that immediately I confirm your contact details, the bank will contact you for the delivery information tomorrow morning and register your Card for urgent delivery to your nominated home address without wasting time.
Dr. Aichoutou Andy James
Director ATM Payment Department
United Bank for Africa Plc, Benin Republic
Telephone Number; +229-66400990
RECONFIRM YOUR CONTACT ADDRESS FOR THE DELIVERY OF YOUR ATM CARD
Thanks and God Bless You.
Mrs. Nancy Janet