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:
- "huge amount of money" (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.
- 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: "email@example.com" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 16 Dec 2019 02:46:21 +0200
Subject: Urgent Business
I will be glad to read from you Asap
I am Robert Deher; I am currently working with Credit Suisse Bank London. I saw your contact during my private search and I have a deep believe that you will be very
honest, committed and capable of assisting in this business venture.
I am an account officer to late Dr. Manzoor Hassan who died with his entire family in Syria, It is based on this that I am contacting you to stand as the beneficiary
to my late client so that his funds in our custody will be released and paid to you as the beneficiary to the deceased.
It is important you respond back to me with your full name and address,including your direct phone number to enable me give you full details of this transaction and
more information about my late client who left huge amount of money in our Bank. I will provide you with all the necessary information, documents and proof to legally
back up the claim from the different offices concerned for the smooth transfer of the fund to any of your account as the true beneficiary.
EMail : firstname.lastname@example.org