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:
- "fiduciary agent" (real lotteries do not use a "claim agent" / "fiduciary agent")
- ",000,000" (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)
- "00,000.00" (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 fake lottery scam. Consider the following facts about real lotteries:
- They don't notify winners by email.
- You can't win without first buying a lottery ticket.
- They don't randomly select email addresses to award prizes to.
- They don't use free email accounts (Yahoo, Hotmail, etc) to communicate with you.
- They don't tell you to call a mobile phone number.
- They don't tell you to keep your winnings secret.
- They will never ask a winner to pay any fees to receive a prize!
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs. Sandra Clabbs" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2018 05:18:50 -0700
Subject: Contact Mr.Thomson For Your WInning Collection Now.
Do you know that the Treasury swallows 10BillionGBP every year from unclaimed lottery payments and winnings yearly?
When you sign up/register for an email account or make use of your email account within specific time frame, your email service provider automatically enters you for a national email lottery draw which is done every three months and winners would be notified by lotto officials or consultants such as me.
Your email has just won the sum of $5,000,000.00 in cash credited to a file in the just concluded National Lottery draw. Your e-mail address attached to: Winning numbers 10-14-27-31-32-47-41 Bonus Number. ( 41) WVW309553 . You would be provided with an online account in which the fund will be credited and then you can log on to any computer anywhere in the world and transfer the fund to your desired bank account.
If however, you have received a previous notice about any fund or winnings but you have been unable to get it for what so ever reason, please reply immediately with your name, address and phone number, so that i can process your transaction and facilitate the release of your fund to you within 72 hours.
Send your replies and details such as, Full Name 2. Address: 3.Age/Gender 4. Occupation 5.Nationality 6.Phone Number ,7. Amount Won ; to Fiduciary Agent below:
Mrs Salomi Pocker( National and International Lottery.)