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:
- ",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)
- ",500,000" (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)
- "dear beneficiary," (this SPAM email was probably sent to thousands of people)
- "(ecowas)" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "H.E.Mrs.Susan Leo" <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 1 Oct 2019 08:08:18 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Your Fund Release Order Notice
This is to inform you that the United Nation Anti-Crime Commission and United Kingdom of Great Britain (UK) in conjunction with the United Nations (UN) Foreign Credit Commission and Debts Settlement Services New York, have ordered the Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) Fraud Victim Compensation Unit of Fidelity Insurance Plc, Benin Republic, West Africa to release your compensation of $2,500,000.00 USD.through ATM Visa Card system, which is the latest instruction from Mr.AntÃ³nio Guterres.United Nation Anti-Crime Commission Secretary General.
We wish to inform you that you are among the 100 beneficiaries to benefit Two Million Five hundred Thousand Dollars ($2,500,000.00 USD) each from the third batch of Three Hundred Million ($300,000,000.00 USD) Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) Fraud Victim Compensation Unit. According to the number of applicants at hand, 40 beneficiaries have been paid, two third of the victims are from the United States, we still have more 60 left to be paid the compensations of $2.5 Million each.
Therefore be advice to contact Financial orabank Benin Republic, with your Full information, for the shipping of your ATM Visa Card, In order to receive your fund/payment, forward your personal details to the following email:( firstname.lastname@example.org ) to avoid wrong delivery such as:
YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION:
STATE OF ORIGIN:
NATIONAL ID CARD No or PASSPORT No:
Financial orabank Benin Republic,
E-mail:( email@example.com )
Tel.:(+229) 97 20 89 51
Fax:(229) 21 31 51 77
Contact Person: Mr.Drissa Cisse. Chief Administrative and Financial Officer.
Financial orabank Benin Republic.
As soon as the bank hears from you, they shall arrange the fund release to you.
Thanks H.E. Mrs.Susan Leo.
CC: David R. Malpass World Bank president.
CC: Mr. AntÃ³nio Guterres UN Secretary General.
cc: Mr. Mamoudou KANE Chief Executive Officer Financial orabank Benin Republic.