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:
- "contact me immediately" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "u.k " (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Duncan Owen" (may be fake)
Reply-To: < email@example.com>
Date: Sun, 10 Nov 2019 15:57:25 -0800
Subject: Your Consent Needed
I sincerely apologize for intruding into your privacy, especially by contacting you through this means for a
business transaction of this magnitude, but i had to do it for the security of this information that i want pass across
I am Mr. Duncan Owen, Manager Halifax Bank U.K, My client Who died with his wife and only child made a
fixed deposit of $17.5 Million in my branch .Form investigations, he did not declare any next of kin so: i need you
to act as the next of kin [since you share surname with the deceased customer] to get this fund for us because the
fund will revert to the government of U.K if nobody comes to claim it.
My anticipated percentages for the share shall be fair enough 55% for me 45% for you. My attorney will perfect
the legal document . should you be interested please contact me IMMEDIATELY and i shall provide you with
more details of this operation