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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- ",000,000" (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)
- "dear beneficiary," (this SPAM email was probably sent to thousands of people)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Nelson Patrick" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 21 May 2021 23:23:08 +0200
I am Nelson Patrick, the general coordinator of Global Debt Reconciliation Commission (GDRC). This commission was inaugurated after the last conference of G20 countries presidents and prime ministers held in France. The primary agendas at the conference were Misappropriation of Funds and Excessive Debts owed to companies and individuals who have fulfilled all statutory obligations. It was agreed at the conference that these entities must receive their funds whether or not their respective debtors are ready to pay them, hence the intervention of the G20 leaders.
The G20 leaders are paying 50% to victims who are owed US$100 million and above, 75% to those owed US$50 million to US$99 million and 100% to those owed US$1 million to $49 millionof course those who are owed below $1,000,000 will definitely receive full payments. This is a palliative cum stimulus package to help these victims who have spent a lot of money in their pursuit to receive their funds get back to their feet, especially after the adverse effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on businesses globally.
You are receiving this email because you are listed among the potential beneficiaries of this payment program. Kindly reply to this email and include your full names, physical address and telephone number for the processing of your payment.