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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "barr." (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a "New Partner from Paraguay" 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: "Barr. Edward Carl Esq." <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 16 Aug 2021 23:03:50 +0100
Subject: Dear Friend,
I'm happy to inform you about my success in getting the fund
transferred under the cooperation of a new partner from paraguay.
Presently i'm in Paraguay for investment projects with my own share of
the total sum. meanwhile,i didn't forget your past efforts and
attempts to assist me in transferring those funds despite that it
failed us some how. Now contact my secretary,his name and conatct
informations are: NAME: Michael Frien Ani EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kindly reconfirm to him the following below information:
Your full name________
Your Phone number________
Ask him to send you the total $USD 1.2 million which I kept for your
compensation for all the past efforts and attempts to assist me in
this matter. I appreciated your efforts at that time very much. so
feel free and get in touched with my secretary Mr. Michael Frien Ani
and instruct him where to send the amount to you. Please do let me
know immediately you receive it so that we can share the joy after all
the sufferness at that time. in the moment, i am very busy here
because of the investment projects which me and the new partner are
having at hand, finally,remember that had forwarded instruction to the
secretary on your behalf to receive that money, so feel free to get in
touch with Michael Frien Ani and he will send the amount to you
without any delay.
with best regards, Barr. Edward Carl Esq.