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:
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
- 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 (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs.Christine Lagarde" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 26 Sep 2017 13:21:37 -0300
Subject: International Monetary Fund.
We would like to bring to the notice of the general public that several variants of financial scam letters purporting to be sanctioned by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) or authored by high ranking IMF officials are currently in circulation, and may appear on official letterhead containing the IMF logo. The scam letters instruct potential victims to contact the IMF for issuance of a Certificate of International Capital Transfer or other forms of approval, to enable them receives large sums of monies as beneficiaries. The contact e-mail information is always BOGUS and unsuspecting individuals are then requested to send their personal banking details which the scammers utilize for their fraudulent activities.
Contrary to what is stated in these scam e-mails, letters, or phone conversations, the IMF does NOT authorize, verify, monitor, or assist in contract or inheritance payments between third parties and/or Governments, nor does it endorse the activities of any bank, financial institution, or other public or private agency. For purposes of clarification, the IMF is an inter-governmental organization whose transactions and operations are carried out directly with its member countries.
If you have already received such e-mails, you are advised to terminate all further contacts with the scammers, and in the event that you have sent them funds, you can contact Mr. Frank Daniel to assist you and have all complain forwarded to the EFCC in Nigeria.
We apologize for all loss and with the help of the Nigeria government, we where able to recover so much money from scammers, that is why we are compensating you with the sum of $5.000.000 US dollars, from the Nigeria government, to receive this payment, you are advised to contact out IMF officer Mr Frank Daniel. To assist you with the receive of your compensation payment,
Note: To receive your compensation payment, it would cost you just a $150 dollars for the setting up of an online baking account that needs to be setup to your name in Africa, to proceed, kindly contact our agent with your information needed below.
1. Full Name ..................................
2. Sex ................................
3. Residential Address .............................
4. Fax/ Phone Number ............................
5. Country ......................
6. your Identity card .................
kindly reconfirm the above information, it's for the benefit of your transaction.
Contact Name: Barrister Frank Daniel
International Monetary Fund.