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.
- 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: alenxander walkerUSA <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 25 Mar 2021 11:04:02 +0100
Subject: 1.000.000 Spende erwarten Sie
Mein Name ist Richard Wahl. 533 Millionen US-Dollar Powerball-Gewinner am
30. MÃ¤rz 2018. Mein Jackpot war ein Geschenk Gottes an mich. Meine gesamte
Familie / Stiftung spendet 1,8 Millionen US-Dollar an Sie und Ihre Familie.
Bitte wenden Sie sich an email@example.com) fÃ¼r
detaillierte Informationen und bitte nehmen Sie dieses Symbol als Geschenk
Gottes an Ihre Familie an.
Power Ball Gewinner.
Richard Stahl Stiftung.