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:
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "barr." (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.
- 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: "Barr. Deny Markovich .ESQ" <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 01 Dec 2020 11:06:38 -0800
Subject: my subject
I am Barr. Deny Markovich of Pavlenko Legal group, I bring you a proposal that will change our lives forever, I lost one of my clients Mr. Berk to Covid 19 on the 17th of August 2020, He worked with DTEK Oil & Gas here in Ukraine for over 25 years. My Client while he was alive made a deposit of $5.380,000,00 (Five Million, Three Hundred and Eighty Thousand united state dollars) with a Bank. he had a health condition that he could not father a child.
All the necessary documents that were issued during the time of deposition of the fund are in my possession, and if nothing is done, the bank is likely going to confiscate the whole funds and send it back to the central bank . I have officially made an application for the release of the fund, and the bank have responded to my application, demanding that present the next of kin a to the deceased. in my search for a his next of kin , I came across you.
I solicit that you partner with me, and I will present you to the bank as the only surviving relative of the deceased hence the bank will release the funds to you. This transaction will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect us from any breach of the law, I must use this opportunity to implore you to exercise the utmost indulgence to keep this matter extraordinarily confidential, get back to me with whatever your decision through my personal email address below as I wait for your prompt response.
Barr. Deny Markovich .ESQ