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:
- "trunk box" (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)
- "trunk boxes" (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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Sgt. Larashan William" <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 04 Dec 2019 06:46:42 -0800
I am writing you this email in good faith but considering the content, I know you will be apprehensive and worried but I am assuring you that, it is made in good faith.
I am Sgt. Larashana William, female Army officer with the USA Military and currently in Baghdad with the Combat Support Squad, US Base Camp, Speicher - Baghdad, Iraq. I need you to help receive some funds in 2 trunk boxes that's awaiting shipment proceedings with a diplomatic cargo delivery company here in Baghdad.
Kindly review the below links as proof of source of funds:
I do hope you are going to give me your trust in carrying out this project which will be of mutual benefit to both of us.
I will provide you with more details upon your receipt of this email on how we'll realize the safe shipment of these boxes via a Priotized Private Delivery channel without the breach of the law. It's 100% risk free venture. I'm not soliciting for money whatsoever, I do not need your money, rather, I will handle all necessary shipment cost from here for a safe delivery to your location as would be designated by you.
I look forward to hear from you at your convenience.
Sgt. Larashan William