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:
- "please endeavor to " (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "to your nominated bank account" (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)
- "there is no risk involved" (almost true for the criminal trying to scam you - arrests of online criminals are rare)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
Date: Wed, 16 Dec 2020 18:13:21 +0100
Subject: Dear friend,
I am Mr Roth Savuth and a personal Accountant Director with Foreign Trade Bank of Cambodia (FTB). It is with a good spirit of heart that I open up this great opportunity to you. A deceased client of mine that shares the same last name as yours died as a result of heart-related condition on march 2005. His heart condition was due to the death of his family members in the tsunami disaster on the 26th December 2004 in Sumatra Indonesia where they all lost their lives.
There is a draft account opened here in my bank since 1999 by my late client, a national of your country. He was a geologist, a businessman, a miner at EMED Mining International company here in Cambodia and also a mining consultant to several other mining conglomerates operating in china, Taiwan, Japan and Vietnam before he passed away on 12th March 2005, leaving nobody as the next of kin / inheritor of his account after his death.
The amount in this account is currently $32,640.000.00 (Thirty Two Million, Six Hundred And Forty Thousand United States Dollars). There is no risk involved at all in this matter, as we are going to adopt a legalized method. I want you to know that I have had everything planned out so that we shall come out successful. Please endeavor to observe utmost discretion in all matters concerning this transaction. Once the funds have been transferred to your nominated bank account we shall then share in the ratio of 50% for me, 50% for you. I will use my position and influence in our bank to make them release this money to you for us to share.
Kindly get back to me for more details.
Mr Roth Savuth
Board of Director
Foreign Trade Bank of Cambodia