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 friend" (a common phrase found 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.
- email@example.com (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: Robert William <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 5 Dec 2019 11:10:05 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: CONTACT HIM FOR YOUR BANK DRAFT
On a very happy note and bearing in mind the staunch commitment that you had put into the quest to see that the fund was transferred to you for claim as we had arranged but to no avail, I write to inform you that at last, the fund transfer had been a SUCCESS.Since all our effort in conjunction with yours were met with various failures and disappointments after the other, there was an influential party from Britain that was approached on our behalf by a Finance and Management Supports Initiatives(a consulting firm); and with her (influential party) imputes, the Fund was paid out and I have collected my own share.Presently, I am in Japan where, in partnership with a core investor in the Mining Sector of their economy, we are investing in the industry.
But, I am not oblivious of the fact that you did your best in that context, although, it seem that element of doubt crept in. You were not to blame, as there were many circumstances that would reflect such skepticism to any reasonable being. For your sincere but unfruitful sacrifices, I pressurized the influential woman to concede some amount as COMPENSATION to you, for the resource that you implunged even the time and inconveniences.The sum of US$850,000.00 was what she agreed to as your compensation value, and the sum was made in draft but, because of my appointment in Japan and too, I could not get through to you since your number at any time indicated "not in use", I then handed it over to the Secretary of the Finance & Management Supports Initiatives, the consulting firm.
His name is Mr Joseph Belibi and his email: (email@example.com) the Secretary is very much informed by me about you and I instructed him to hand over the Draft you as soon as you contact him. I gave him the CODE 555, which you have to mention for identification.Note that at times I will be in the site and the Internet does not work there.Only when I am in the city.
Mr Robert William