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:
- "dear sir/madam" (a standard Nigerian greeting phrase)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs.Miraj Abdul-Tawwab" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 27 Jun 2019 20:17:09 -0700
Subject: Kindly confirm your interest
I am sorry to encroach into your privacy. My name is Mrs.Miraj Abdul-Tawwab, from Syria. I am the wife of late Mr. Abdul-Tawwab, an industrialist Syria. Due to the civil war in Syria, I want to relocate to your country to invest my late husband fund in Real Estate as a foreign business partner. If you can be interested and trusted I will give more details for further directives.
If you are not interested do not reply to this email and please delete this message.
Contact me directly on my email address,