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:
- "consignment " (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)
- "million 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)
- "diplomatic agent" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
- 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)
- below information: gabriel cuban email: open email(firstname.lastname@example.org) phone/cell number: +1(518)302-9637 (call or text message) (Gmail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: Mark Zolu <email@example.com>
Date: Sun, 15 Aug 2021 11:59:23 -0700
Subject: Good Day,
This is to inform you that Diplomatic Agent Gabriel Cuban has been
clear by the airport authorities with our consignment box that worth
12.8 million dollars and Gabriel Cuban is ready to make the deliver
without hindrance due to the Corona Virus Pandemic. Kindly reconfirm
your information such as Name and address with phone/cell number to
enable him make the delivering immediately and contact Gabriel Cuban
with below information:
Email: open email(firstname.lastname@example.org)
Phone/cell number: +1(518)302-9637 (Call or Text Message)
Also remember our arrangement on the sharing the $12.8 million dollars
after delivering and I hope you will not betray the trust and
confidence and if you have any question call me or contact me with
email for details if needed and do not disclose the content with
Diplomatic Agent Gabriel Cuban.
Email: open email(email@example.com)
Telephone: +229-91738653 or +229-691l11936