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:
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "MR.TEST" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 15 Feb 2021 13:45:09 +0100
Subject: ATM CARD
This is to inform you of your long overdue Payment outstanding in our records. We saw your email address in our Central Computer unit among a list of unpaid inheritance claims individuals and have to update your information through this email contact for immediate confirmation. Your email appeared among the beneficiaries who will receive a part-payment of their overdue fund, Credited to the Online Bank ATM Card account that was set up for you and it has been approved already months ago.
However we received an email from one (Mrs. Elizabeth Juno) who told us That she is your next of kin and that you died in a car accident four months ago. She has also submitted her contact information to the office department for the delivery of your ATM Card to her as your inheritor. We are now verifying by contacting your email address as we have in our Bank records before we can make the delivery to her and for us to conclude confirmation if you are dead or not.
Please, confirm your response immediately to us before we release your ATM Card to her against your name listed out. Upon this, I request you send your full personal information as soon as possible to Atm Counsellor Office to enable them finalize with the delivery of your ATM Card to you.
Your Full Names: _____________
Contact Address: _____________
Mobile Phone: _____________
In order to resolve this problem, Please contact (Atm Counsellor Office) immediately for the delivery of your ATM Card via their below contact.
Contact Person: Mr.Gerald Kasper.
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you very much for your anticipated cooperation
Mrs. Regina Eidenhart