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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "huge sum of money" (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)
- "top secret" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Johanna kuruvilla" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 25 Mar 2019 02:41:05 -0700
Subject: Urgent Assistance
I am Reverend Johanna kuruvilla from Aleppo Syria. I am in London at the moment as a political refugee but this issue of brexit and so much tight immigration policies is become a huge problem,I don't have access to travel and I am afraid that my account might be frozen
I have a huge sum of money deposited in an offshore escrow account by my late father and I need your urgent help to quickly move this money from the present place to another country of your choice where every detail of me will be erased, it is the only thing left for me now and I want to start a new life if one day I become free .
This transaction requires immediate attention and am over hearing that most countries are freezing account that belong to Syria's my money is clean but I don't want to take chances.
All i want from you is a proof of absolute trust worthy, but on the contrary please forgive my indulgence and delete this e-mail content without sharing
If you are interested and able to handle this for me in all honesty without any betrayal of trust that I shall repose on you then contact me for more details. Please note that this transaction is confidential and should be kept in top secret until we have completed the transfer to your appointed account.
Thank you very much for your understanding.
Reverend Johanna kuruvilla