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:
- "million us dollars" (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 next of kin scam.
- 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: "Ahmad Azzim" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 2 Oct 2017 00:28:02 -0700
Subject: Business proposal
I am Mr.Ahmad Azzim , the Head of Accounting Audit Committee Department of CIMB Bank Berhad Malaysia. This is about a business proposal that will be of an immense benefit for both of us.
In my department, I discovered an abandoned sum of $15.6 Million US Dollars in an account that belongs to one of our late foreign customer Mr Robert Lawton, an Australian businessman and who was one of the victim of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 (MH370/MAS370) which crashed in the south of the Indian Ocean on March 8, 2014 from Kuala Lumpur International Airport to Beijing Capital International Airport killing all on board including his wife Mrs Lawton Catherine
Mr Robert Lawton and Mrs. Lawton Catherine are number 64/65 on the list; see the link below manifest of the flight:
Since their death, our bank has been waiting for the next of kin to come for the claim of their money and goods valued the sum of $15.6 Million US Dollars. But nobody has done so, I personally have failed in the search for her relatives, I seek your consent to present you to the bank as the next of kin of the deceased so that the proceeds of this account valued at $15.6 Million US Dollars. Can be paid to you.
The deal will be divided in this ratio: 50% for me and 50% for you. I have in my possession all the necessary and important documents that can be used in this business. I need your honest Co-operation, Confidentiality and Trust to enable us sees this transaction through.
I guarantee you 100% success in this business; you can be rest assured that this transaction is executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the law both here and in your country.
If you are handling this deal, kindly provide me with the following details so that I could upload them here in our bank's database as the rightful beneficiary to this fund:
1, your first full name:
2, your private telephone numbers (office and mobile)
3, private fax number:
4, your full address:
5, Your Age / Gender:
6, your job / profession:
7, Private / alternative e-mail address:
Having gone through a methodical search, I decided to contact you, hoping that you will find this proposal interesting, please on your confirmation of this message and indicating your interest I will provide you with more information.
Please let me know your decision rather than keep me waiting. Note: Do not forget that this business requires absolute secrecy and has to be done as quickly as possible.
Mr. Ahmad Azzim