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:
- "million 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)
- "confidential business" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- "utmost confidentiality" (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.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Engr. Chavez Alejo" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 08 Oct 2019 15:17:02 +0200
Subject: Crude oil Lifting License No: STP-ECA/074895
Crude oil Lifting License No: STP-ECA/074895
Reply Email: email@example.com
This is a confidential business offer from the oil rich Sao Tome and Principe . Please ensure that you reply this email strictly at firstname.lastname@example.org
I make this introduction based on my regard for your credibility. My name is Engr. Chavez Alejo. I work with the Sao Tome and Principe national petroleum agency.
To be precise, I oversee the issuance of oil allocation license for our oil company. My position in the agency entitles me to recommend oil allocation bidders and actualize oil lifting and exploration allocation licenses to my candidates based on my interest. I also oversea and approve the issuance of the license for oil allocation in our company and also monitor the lifting procedures in our company.
In June 2007, I facilitated and actualized the license of a candidate. A business man from Korea (Comprehensive details to be provided subsequently).The license was for 1 year at 24 million BBLS/12 months. Incidentally the candidate was no more. The license has been valid till date (as I always ensure that I keep to my side of the bargain), I have decided to begin using the license from OCTOBER 2019. I am in need of a partner from your country whom I can trust. I will package this partner as the allocation license beneficiary and assign the license to this partner. Due to my position in the petroleum agency, I cannot handle this position. Your profile fits into the criteria of a partner I need. This is why I am contacting you. With the trend of events in Sao Tome and Principe, we shall be able to lift a minimum of 300,000 barrels of BLCO per month. This will fetch us an average of US$28 million per month. And we have from OCTOBER 2019 up until OCTOBER 2020 to lift crude oil which will fetch us approximately (12) x (28) Million dollars. Which is approximately 336 Million dollars for the rest of the time of the license allocation. I have ready buyers who are waiting and would be ready to scramble for any number of barrels we lift. Also I will oversee all lifting procedures with the available mercenary around.
This is what I propose:
1. Your company profile shall be used in place of the initial license Operator. This I shall handle with my capacity in the company.
2. I will ensure that your company's profile is recognized as the current license operator and that we have a mandate for at least min of 300,000 barrels per month, a maximum of 500,000 barrels per month. Starting from OCTOBER.
3. I will ensure that all lifting procedures are in place and buyers readily available to purchase the product.
4. You shall stand in as the license operator for all lifting and sales transactions; we shall open an account for the receipt of the oil sale proceeds in which both of us shall be signatories to the account or you can provide your personal or company bank account to receive the payments on our behalf.
5. We shall split the oil sale proceeds in the ratio of 60:40 equity shares. I shall be entitled to 60% share while your company shall be entitled to 40% share.
Please note: no third party arrangement shall be allowed. I believe you are a man of wisdom and intelligence.
This offer I make to you is based on utmost good faith. I could be Jeopardizing my position in the agency if a word of this goes out.
Therefore without mincing words, I rely on you for utmost confidentiality on every bit of detail relating to this transaction.
Please reply this email strictly at email@example.com
I am in London on official duties at the moment waiting for your response. Upon your positive response, I will be willing to forward to you proof of my proposition and my personal identity. Also I shall fly back to Sao Tome and Principe and from there we shall commence operations. I shall also provide you details of the former license operator and a copy of the license issued to him for the lifting of crude oil in our company which I personally approved and endorsed. Also procedures for license
reassignment and actualizing the rest of the project shall be provided to you.
Please in response to this email, quote the reference number:Crude oil Lifting License No: STP-ECA/074895
I look forward to a prospective business relationship between us.
Engr. Chavez Alejo